Get the most out of your garden this summer when you use fresh herbs like oregano as a marinade for grilled vegetables. Sliced, garden-fresh zucchini and squash are perfect for grilling at your backyard barbecue, and can be flavored with tasty herbal marinades, just like with chicken and beef.
Give this oregano marinade a try the next time you fire up the grill. It takes advantage of the abundance of pungent summery oregano, and punches it up with citrus for a Cuban flavor.
How to Grow Oregano
Oregano is an easy herb to grow from seed or seedling, offering a lot of flavor in those tender, slightly fuzzy leaves. Additionally, it’s perennial in zones 5 to 9, drought tolerant and a pollinator magnet.
Oregano seeds can be direct sown into containers or beds after the last frost in spring, or started indoors six weeks before planting. Place oregano seedlings in a sunny location, one that gets a minimum of six to eight hours of sunlight a day.
Like most plants, oregano likes well-draining soil, achieved by mixing organic matter like compost into your garden soil. Though you should water oregano regularly, you’ll find that it can handle dry spells pretty well.
To harvest oregano, select stems from the top of the plant and clip several inches down. Leave four to six leaves on the remaining stems so the plant will grow into a bushy shape.
In the kitchen, rinse the herbs and pull off the leaves. Chop the intensely flavorful leaves and use in long-cooking preparations like sauces and marinades. You’ll recognize the scent and flavor from Italian favorites like pizza. Oregano also shows up in other cuisines as well, like Greek, Mexican and Cuban, as in this Cuban-inspired Mojo Marinade made with fresh oregano.
Make a Mojo Marinade for Grilled Vegetables
Grow and cook with oregano this summer and make this Oregano Mojo Marinade that is delicious with grilled or roasted chicken, shrimp or pork, or sliced vegetables like zucchini, peppers and bell peppers.
Oregano Mojo Marinade Recipe
Yield: 1½ cups
- 1/4 cup fresh oregano leaves
- 7 garlic cloves
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- Place oregano and garlic cloves in blender jar. Blend for one minute or until oregano is finely chopped.
- Pour marinade over vegetables and place container in refrigerator for up to two hours.
- Leftover marinade can be frozen for later use.
Inspired by a recipe from Bonnie Plants.