Gourmet Grilling: 4 Celeb-Inspired Dishes Starring Seasonal Veggies

Canadian-grown favourites – asparagus, spring peas and heirloom tomatoes – are all in season, rich in flavour and pair with the grill in a fresh way. Here, recipes fromTop Chef Canada finalist, Jonathan Goodyear.


You can’t get much deeper Canadian roots than those of chef Jonathan Goodyear (pictured above). A Torontonian with a soupçon of East Coast, his family goes back eight generations here.

In his recipes here, Canadian-grown favourites – asparagus, spring peas and heirloom tomatoes – are all in season, rich in flavour and pair with the grill in a fresh way. Not a burger or a kebab in sight, yet there’s still an element of fire to satiate the craving.

“It’s about purity of ingredients. Frankly, there’s nothing purer than wild foraged food and fire!”

So, how to create a sophisticated outdoor dining experience? “Keep the technique simple,” he says. “The last thing you want is stress.”



Spring Pea and White Truffle Ravioli

500 mL ricotta cheese
½ cup finely sliced chives
1 tbsp white truffle oil
2 egg yolks
Salt and pepper
2 lb fresh pasta dough
250 mL egg wash
100 mL olive oil
2 tbsp diced shallot
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 cup cleaned, chopped morel mushrooms
1 sprig thyme
100 mL white wine
1 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes
1 cup fresh peas, blanched
100 mL chicken stock
Grilled focaccia
Butter and grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

1) In a large bowl, combine ricotta, egg yolks, truffle oil and chives; season with salt and pepper to taste.

2) With pasta machine or attachment for mixer, roll out fresh pasta into 12-inch sections. Keep sheets covered with a damp towel.

3)Brush one side of pasta with egg wash and pipe a row of ricotta filling onto pasta.

4) Place second sheet of pasta on top. Move fingers around each section of ricotta to remove any air. Once the air is removed, cut ravioli out with a paring knife. Refrigerate ravioli as you work on making more. Do not stack fresh pasta as it will stick together.

5) In large sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic; cook until slightly softened but not browned. Add morels and thyme; season with salt and pepper.

6) When mushrooms are tender, deglaze pan with white wine. Add tomatoes, peas and stock; reduce heat to minimum.

7) In large pot of boiling salted water, cook ravioli until they float. Reserving about 1 cup of cooking liquid, add raviolis to simmering sauté pan. (If ravioli becomes too dry, slowly add reserved pasta water until the dish becomes creamy.)

8) Serve in a large bowl and break up grilled focaccia over the pasta for added flavour.

Chef’s tip: Finish with butter and Parmesan cheese.

Serves 4


Grilled Ontario Asparagus with Fresh Stracciatella Cheese

2  bunches Ontario asparagus, trimmed
1   bunch white asparagus, trimmed
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
500 mL fresh stracciatella cheese
500 mL preserved summer tomatoes or sun-dried tomatoes in oil
1 bunch basil
Fleur de sel

1) Preheat barbecue grill. Brush with well-oiled rag. On baking sheet, drizzle asparagus lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to grill, rotating every 2 to 3 minutes or until tender. (Using a vegetable basket may help as asparagus have a tendency of falling through the grill.

2) Transfer grilled spears to platter. Garnish with stracciatella, tomatoes, basil and fleur de sel to taste.

Chef’s tip: Spoon a bit of the olive oil from the tomatoes onto the cheese for extra flavour.

Serves 4


Summer Cauliflower Crostini

1 cauliflower, broken into florets
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 focaccia
2 tbsp capers
2 tbsp sultana raisins
2 tbsp slivered almonds
¼ bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 tbsp finely chopped tarragon

Honey Vinaigrette
100 ml honey
100 ml champagne vinegar
100 ml grapeseed oil
1 tbsp grainy mustard


1) Lightly toss florets in oil, season with salt and pepper and roast in 425 F oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Slice focaccia into 1.5-inch slices; brush with olive oil and grill on preheated barbecue until crispy.

2) In large bowl, combine roasted cauliflower, capers, raisins, almonds, parsley and tarragon. Drizzle with some of the Honey Vinaigrette, tasting frequently as it packs a punch. (If mixture is too sweet, add some fresh lemon juice.) Spoon mixture over focaccia.

Honey Vinaigrette
1) Blend all ingredients until emulsified.

2)Set aside.

Serves 4