It seemed like a good idea at the time. I was planning a grill-based dinner for some friends last weekend, and there were a lot of cool-looking root vegetables at the farmers’ market on Friday. French breakfast radishes, Thumbelina carrots—the names alone were worth paying for. It occurred to me that I’d never seen a book about grilling radishes or carrots, but I forged ahead.
Note to self: There is a reason no one has written such a book. The reason is that it would be very short. Chapter 1: “It Doesn’t Work.” The End.
Rather than releasing some deep inner flavor, the coals just charred the vegetables, so we ended up eating burned raw radishes and blackened carrots, which taste even worse than they sound.
After my experiment, I learned that you actually can grill these veggies, but first you need to boil (or microwave) them for three to four minutes. Alternately, or in addition, wrap them in tin foil before placing them on the grill. To me, this defeats the purpose of grilling, which is all about minimal preparation.
My conclusion: Root vegetables—or these, anyway—are built for roasting or eating raw. Want to try the grill anyway? Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Unburned root vegetables, $2 a bunch, Migliorelli Farm Stand (among many others), Union Square Greenmarket, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, sunup to sundown.