05/22/2012 12:52 EDT | Updated 07/22/2012 05:12 EDT

Grilled sausages with veggies perfect for outdoor warm-weather noshing

Here is a take on Rio de Janeiro’s sausage-on-a-bun, which is popular on their beautiful beaches and at family celebrations. Grilled sausages are smothered with a tasty grilled vegetable topping and sprinkled with fresh tomatoes. Just be sure to have plenty of napkins on hand.

Grilled Sausages and Veggies

500 g (1 lb) asparagus, trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces

1 large onion, halved and sliced lengthwise

1 sweet pepper (any colour), seeded and thinly sliced lengthwise

15 ml (1 tbsp) olive oil

20 ml (4 tsp) balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar

2 ml (1/2 tsp) dried oregano

Salt and pepper, to taste

4 fresh pork sausages (about 500 g/1 lb)

4 sausage buns, halved horizontally

1 tomato, chopped

In a bowl, toss together asparagus, onion, sweet pepper and oil; transfer to a grill basket. Place grill basket on greased grill over medium heat; close lid and grill, stirring occasionally, until tender and lightly marked, about 15 minutes. Return vegetables to bowl; toss with vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, grill sausages alongside vegetables, turning frequently, until browned and meat thermometer registers 71 C (160 F), about 25 minutes. To serve, place a sausage in each bun; top with vegetables and tomato.

Makes 4 servings.

Tips: The secret to perfect grilled sausages is to grill them slowly on medium heat, adjusting heat if necessary and turning frequently with tongs. Do not pierce them or juices will escape, resulting in dry sausages and perhaps flare-ups.

If you don't have a grill basket, vegetables can be prepared directly on the grill. Leave asparagus whole, seed and quarter pepper and cut onion into 1-cm (1/2-inch) thick slices. Brush with oil and place on grill. Grill, turning occasionally, until tender, removing them as they are done. Let cool slightly; cut into bite-size pieces and continue with recipe as directed.

Nutrition information per serving: 609 calories; 24 g protein; 40 g fat; 36 g carbohydrate; 4 g fibre.

Source: Foodland Ontario.