Easy dinner options: Simple grilled sides for Gluten-Free Wednesday

With the weather as nice as it is, it's almost criminal to cook indoors. Show your grill a little love this Gluten-Free Wednesday with these tempting dish ideas. Each makes for a perfectly robust side or light main course, and each one comes together quickly using only a handful of ingredients.

Grilled eggplant with anchovies, garlic and rosemary: Stud thick wedges of eggplant with bits of garlic, anchovy and rosemary. The aromatic flavors work wonderfully with the eggplant, the wedges grilling up like thick steaks.

Grilled romaine with walnuts, Parmesan and anchovy dressing: Grilled tender hearts of romaine are tossed with a fresh anchovy dressing, toasted walnuts and shaved Parmesan for a salad, or light dinner, that comes together in 30 minutes.

RECIPES: 99 easy dinner ideas in about an hour or less

Green beans with pickled shallots: Green beans are quickly softened over the grill, then the lightly charred beans are dressed with olive oil, salt and tangy quick-pickled shallots. You can pickle the shallots ahead of time so they're ready to go when needed.

If you are sensitive to gluten, check all ingredients to make sure they are gluten-free before using, as many may contain trace gluten (such as spices, a number of which include flour as an anti-caking agent), and/or are produced in facilities that also process gluten-based products. Some ingredients, such as certain cheeses, are not suitable for certain individuals depending on their gluten sensitivity.

You can find the recipes below.

And for more ideas, click through our easy dinner recipes gallery and check out our Dinner Tonight page, devoted to recipes that can be made in an hour or less. Looking for a particular type of recipe? Comment below or email me at noelle.carter@latimes.com.

QUICK & EASY: 99 terrific recipes in about an hour or less


Total time: 45 minutes | Serves 6 to 8
3 salted anchovies (6 fillets)
6 cloves garlic
1 cup olive oil, plus more if necessary
2 large (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pounds) round eggplants
2 long branches fresh rosemary

1. Rinse the anchovies under running water to remove excess salt and then soak in water to cover in small bowl until softened, about 5 minutes. Remove the fillets, discard the skeletons and soak another 5 minutes until flexible. Cut into approximately half-inch crosswise pieces.

2. Using a very sharp knife, slice the garlic crosswise as thin as you can. Reserve the tops, bottoms and odd-shaped pieces in a bowl and cover with olive oil.

3. Trim the tops and bottoms of the eggplants, and cut the eggplants into 1-inch-thick crosswise slices.

4. Working with one slice at a time, use a paring knife to cut 5 shallow slits into the eggplant -- four at the compass points and one in the center; they should be about one-half-inch deep and should not go all the way through.

5. Insert a garlic slice in each of the slits (if necessary, widen the slit by wiggling the paring knife in it). Insert a piece of anchovy in each slit. Finally, insert a tuft of rosemary in each slit. The fillings should be as close to flush with the surface as you can make them. Repeat with the remaining eggplant slices.

6. Sprinkle both sides of each eggplant slice with salt and brush generously with the garlic olive oil. Grill over a moderate fire until browned on one side, 4 to 5 minutes.

7. Brush with more olive oil and use a spatula to turn to the other side and brush that with oil as well. Continue cooking and brushing with oil until the eggplant is browned on both sides and tender, about 3 to 4 minutes.

8. Remove to a platter, brush with any remaining oil and serve.

Each of 6 servings: Calories 283; Protein 2 grams; Carbohydrates 10 grams; Fiber 4 grams; Fat 28 grams; Saturated fat 4 grams; Cholesterol 2 mg; Sugar 5 grams; Sodium 59 mg.


Total time: 30 minutes | Serves 6

4 anchovy fillets
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup olive oil
3 teaspoons lemon juice
3 (6-ounce) hearts of romaine
2/3 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano

1. In a mortar and pestle or a blender, puree the anchovy fillets, garlic and salt. Slowly add the olive oil in a stream, stirring or pureeing constantly to make a creamy sauce. Stir in the lemon juice, taste and add more lemon juice or salt if necessary. Set aside.

2. Prepare a wood fire or heat a grill pan over medium-high heat until hot. Split the hearts of romaine in half lengthwise, leaving them attached at the base. Brush both sides of each half with the anchovy sauce and then grill over a wood fire or in a grill pan until the leaves sizzle and begin to look a little frazzled, about 2 minutes on each side. They probably won't brown much.

3. Remove the cooked romaine to individual serving plates, cut-side up. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts and spoon over some more dressing. Use a vegetable peeler to shave Parmigiano-Reggiano in thin sheets over top. Serve immediately.

Each serving: 174 calories; 3 grams protein; 5 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 16 grams fat; 3 grams saturated fat; 5 mg. cholesterol; 1 gram sugar; 117 mg. sodium.


Total time: 10 minutes, plus 1 hour standing time for shallots | Serves 4 to 6

2 shallots, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 pound fresh green beans
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1. In a small bowl, combine the shallots and the vinegar and set aside for 1 hour.

2. Toss the green beans with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Grill over high heat until browned on both sides, about 8 to 10 minutes on an outdoor grill on the grill surface or in a grill basket.

3. Toss the grilled green beans with the lemon zest and arrange on a platter. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

4. Spoon the pickled shallots over the the beans. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons remaining olive oil.

Each of 6 servings: 103 calories; 1 gram protein; 5 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 9 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 0 cholesterol; 98 mg. sodium.

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