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The Green Barbecue by Rukmini Iyer


Modern Vegan & Vegetarian Recipes to Cook Outdoors & In.



Rukmini Iyer is turning barbecuing on its head this summer with her delicious new book - The Green Barbecue. This mouth-watering collection of 75 flavour-packed recipes are all completely meat-free, with over half the recipes entirely plant-based and suitable for vegans. So whether you’re entertaining veggie guests or preparing a flexitarian feast, these recipes are quick and easy to make, great for all the family and completely fuss-free.



What's more, the wonderful Rukmini also provides alternative indoor cooking instructions for inclement weather, this is beautiful Blighty after all... so you can enjoy the dishes year–round or live in a flat where barbecuing is not ideal.


All summer long you can delight your friends and family with a wide range of veggie-friendly options, from Griddled Papaya with Tamarind and Coconut to Charred Tenderstem Broccoli with Blood Oranges and Blue Cheese to Crispy Barbecue Tofu and Dill-soused Feta. Rukmini’s book is packed with ideas from the simplest barbecue on the beach or park to outdoor feasts in the comfort of your own garden.



‘‘I’m not sure there’s anything nicer than cooking and eating outside. With good company, perhaps a dog or two, or even just contemplatively cooking a dish for yourself, it’s incredibly satisfying to break cooking down into its simplest components - one heat source, and a bit of food.’’



There is a section on ‘Something to Start’ (Griddled Pineapple, Halloumi & Mint Skewers or Crispy Gnocchi – on a stick! as seen in the header image above) perfect for kicking off a party.



Fresh & Light’ looks at the perfect combination of griddled and charred vegetables with fresh leaves, herbs, salady bits and punchy dressings.



The ‘Something Substantial’ chapter has the hearty hero vegetable dishes taking centre stage (Squash with Charred Carrots, Red Onions, Coriander Seeds, Pistachios & Lime or Gunpowder Potatoes with Fennel Seeds, Chilli, Coriander & Cashews). And for those wanting more traditional barbecue-style food, there’s a moreish array of genius veggie burgers and salads.



Something Sweet’ will finish your outdoor feast with anything from fresh griddled fruit to indulgent melted chocolate, caramel or peanut butter (or all three!).


So whether you’re vegetarian, vegan or looking to eat more plant-based food as part of your diet – The Green Barbecue will give you lots of ideas to maximise your time outdoors throughout summer and beyond.



Grilled Asparagus, Radishes & Burrata with Lemon & Basil


Vegetarian - Serves: 4


‘‘I love the combination of crisp and barbecued radishes against grilled asparagus, burrata and the crunch of good sea salt flakes. All this needs is a simple lemon and basil dressing, and you have a sharing platter that is both moreish and beautiful.’’ - Rukmini



Prep: 10 minutes - Cook: under 15 minutes


400g asparagus spears

200g radishes, half of them halved, the rest very thinly sliced (see note)

2 tablespoons olive oil

A pinch of sea salt flakes

1 burrata (about 150g drained), at room temperature

A handful of fresh basil leaves, torn



3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 lemon, juice only

Sea salt flakes

Freshly ground black pepper


Trim the ends of the asparagus spears (or snap the ends off at the point where they break easily), then tip them into a large bowl with the halved radishes, olive oil and a pinch of sea salt, and mix well.


Put the thinly sliced radishes into cold water to crisp up. In a separate bowl, mix the extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, a big pinch of sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper for the dressing. Taste and adjust the salt as needed.


Once your barbecue is ready, griddle the asparagus and halved radishes for about 6–8 minutes, turning them every so often, until nicely charred.


Transfer to a serving platter, scatter over the drained sliced radishes, and drizzle with most of the lemon dressing. Place the burrata in the middle of the dish and pour the remaining dressing over it, then scatter everything with the basil leaves and serve hot or at room temperature.


NOTE: When you prepare your radishes, halve the largest ones and slice the smallest ones, to make sure you don’t lose any through the barbecue grill.


Chipotle Mushroom & Black Bean Burgers with Peanuts & Lime


Vegan - Serves: 4


‘‘These burgers are ridiculously moreish – I like to serve them in buns with mayonnaise and pickles. Make life easier for yourself by cooking them in the oven first, then finishing them off with a quick warm-through on the barbecue before serving.’’ - Rukmini



Prep: 20 minutes - Cook: 25 minutes


50g smooth peanut butter

1 x 400g tin of black beans, drained, but not rinsed

2 small cloves of garlic, peeled

2 teaspoons chipotle chilli flakes

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 heaped tablespoon rye flour

1 lime, zest only

1 teaspoon sea salt flakes

250g chestnut mushrooms



1 lime, cut into 4 wedges

A handful of chopped salted peanuts

A handful of chopped fresh coriander

4 burger buns


Put the peanut butter into a food processor with 60g of the black beans, the garlic, chilli flakes, cumin, olive oil, rye flour, lime zest and sea salt flakes, and blitz until you have a very thick paste. Tip it into a large bowl and stir in the rest of the black beans.


Tip the mushrooms into the processor – no need to wash it – and pulse until you have a dry mushroom mince. Stir this into the black bean mixture. With damp hands, form it into four thick burgers and arrange them on a lined baking sheet.


Bake in the oven at 180C fan/200C/gas 6 for 25–30 minutes. When they’ve got 10 minutes left, gently flip them over so they can crisp up on the other side.


They’re ready to serve straight from the oven, but for a nice bit of smokiness you can let them cool down, then finish them on a medium barbecue for a couple of minutes per side. Squeeze over the lime wedges and top with a handful of chopped peanuts and coriander, then sandwich them into lightly grilled burger buns.


Summer Pudding Packets: Vanilla Roasted Berries with Brioche, Mascarpone & Almonds


Vegetarian - Serves: 4


‘‘This deconstructed spin on a summer pudding (where deconstructed is code for much, much easier) lets you gently cook your fruit in a packet on the barbecue, and toast your brioche alongside. Replace the chilled mascarpone with ice cream, if you wish.’’ - Rukmini



Prep: 10 minutes - Cook: 10 minutes


150g blackberries

275g raspberries

225g blueberries or grapes

2 teaspoons caster sugar

1 vanilla pod, split

8 slices of brioche

4 tablespoons chilled mascarpone

A handful of toasted almonds and fresh mint leaves, to serve


Take a large piece of foil and place the blackberries, raspberries and blueberries or grapes in the middle. Scatter over the caster sugar, lay the vanilla pod on top, then fold the foil into a neat parcel, with the seams at the top.


Once your barbecue is medium hot, place the foil packet on one side of the barbecue, and let the berries cook for 10–15 minutes. Meanwhile, toast your sliced brioche in batches on the other side of the barbecue, cutting them into triangles once toasted.


Divide the lightly cooked fruit between four plates, with the toasted brioche. Add a tablespoon of mascarpone, scatter over the toasted almonds and mint leaves, and serve hot.


Rukmini's Fortnum's Favourites


‘‘I love sending Fortnum's hampers to friends for new babies, house moves or special events, and having eaten my way through the entire Fortnums food range when styling the Christmas brochure a couple of years back, I came away with a well-researched list of favourites. I like to mix and match items from the range to create my own bespoke gift hampers, which almost always involve the following:’’



Prince Charming Chocolate Frogs

‘‘These chocolate frogs are so sweet - if I’m in Piccadilly I’ll always drop into the chocolate shop for a couple of these - one for me, one as a gift. I enjoy that the Fortnum’s lady at the counter never raises an eyebrow when I ask, very seriously, for the two frogs to be individually boxed and wrapped. They come in an adorable matchbox when you buy them online.’’



Pea Green Boat Cheddar Sables

‘‘A staple in any hamper sent by me - they’re incredibly moreish and I’ve had messages from friends waxing lyrical about them. Perfect for a pre-dinner snack with a glass of wine - other lovely flavours include cumin, chilli and fennel.’’



Fortnum's Nut Selection

‘‘Hard to choose between these and rose and violet creams, my other controversial favourite, but the dark chocolate nut clusters in this collection are just divine. I wouldn’t kick the milk chocolate ones out of the bath either.’’



Blanc des Blancs Champagne

‘‘Champagne in a box with an elephant on. What’s not to love? It’s a delicious aperitif for a special occasion, and very giftable.’’



Truffle Cheddar Wedge

‘‘This truffled cheddar is hands down the best cheese I’ve ever had. And I’ve eaten a lot of cheese. Although I probably shouldn’t say this publicly, as if there’s a run on it, I may have a mini-meltdown. Eat it straight from the wedge, as if biting into an apple. Dreamy.’’



Recipes extracted from: The Green Barbecue (Vegan & Vegetarian Recipes to Cook Outdoors & In) by Rukmini Iyer (Square Peg) 29th April 2021, £17.99 HBK Photography by David Loftus