Grilled Veg Salad with Raw Green Mole

This uncooked mole gets heat from jalapeño, cooling freshness from lettuce and herbs, and a touch of richness from toasted seeds. Use any extra as a dip for crudités, or top with lemon zest.

This recipe is the perfect recipe to break up the basic salad monotony, particularly for BBQs. All thanks to the crazy chic Manhatten eaterie El Rey.



¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
½ teaspoon olive oil
Kosher salt
½ avocado, pitted, peeled
3 medium tomatillos, husks removed, rinsed, quartered
1 spring onion, bulb only, chopped
½ jalapeño, seeded if desired, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely grated
2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
½ cup chopped kale
¼ cup mint leaves
¼ cup parsley leaves
¼ cup tarragon leaves
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Vegetables & Assembly

8 ounces pattypan squash (about 10 small), halved, quartered if large
1 Japanese eggplant quartered lengthwise
4 spring onions or scallions, trimmed, spring onions halved lengthwise if large
1 romaine heart quartered lengthwise
2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons torn mixed tender herbs (such as parsley, tarragon, and/or mint)
Lemon wedges (for serving)



Preheat oven to 350°. Toss pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt. Bake, stirring occasionally, until pumpkin seeds are puffed and both seeds are golden brown, 6–8 minutes.

Purée avocado, tomatillo, spring onion, jalapeño, garlic, lettuce, kale, mint, parsley, tarragon, lime juice, half of toasted seed mixture, and ¼ cup water in a blender until smooth; season with salt.

Do Ahead: Mole can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.

Vegetables & Assembly

Prepare grill for medium heat (or, heat a dry cast-iron skillet over medium). Toss squash, eggplant, spring onions, romaine, and oil in a large bowl to coat; season with salt.

Grill vegetables, cut side down, turning occasionally, until tender and lightly charred all over, 5–10 minutes.

Spoon some mole on a platter (you will not need all) and arrange grilled vegetables on top. Top with herbs and remaining toasted seed mixture. Serve vegetables with lemon wedges for squeezing over.


Recipe: Gerardo Gonzalez, El Rey, NYC | Photograph: Christopher Baker