Dan Kovach

The Copper Grill co-owner shares two fresh, simple recipes from his repertoire.

Grilled Vegetable & Shrimp Pasta

“I don’t eat pasta often, but when I do, I love it with fresh grilled vegetables.

The grilling of the vegetables and shrimp brings out the natural sweetness with the slight smoky char of the grill. The sautéed garlic with the sweet pear tomatoes elevates the whole flavor profile, and finishing the dish with the white balsamic vinegar and Parmesan cheese adds the acid and salt to round out the dish.

I love flavors and textures.”

8 large gulf shrimp
6 asparagus spears
1 handful of baby spinach
1 red bell pepper
1 portobello mushroom
10-12 pear tomatoes
2 cloves of minced garlic
corkscrew pasta
3 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
extra virgin olive oil
salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese to taste

 1. Lightly toss asparagus, sliced red bell pepper and mushrooms in olive oil, season with salt and pepper and grill on medium-high heat until slightly tender.

2. Season shrimp with salt and pepper and grill until done.

3. Warm garlic in olive oil on medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes, then add tomatoes, stirring occasionally for an additional 2-3 minutes.

4. Add cooked pasta, stir to coat and heat through (3-5 minutes), then drizzle with white balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Top pasta with grilled shrimp and vegetables and enjoy.

Lemon Basil Martini

“I love basil and anything citrus. Citrus is refreshing and is one of my favorite ingredients in just about anything. This martini is just a simple, fun drink, and the basil vodka is from Little Rock’s own Rock Town Distillery. They are locally owned like Copper Grill, and we support local as often as possible.”

2 oz. Rock Town Basil Vodka
1 oz. simple syrup
1 oz. fresh lemon juice
1 basil leaf

1. Combine all ingredients over ice in a shaker.

2. Shake vigorously for 1 minute and pour into a sugar-rimmed martini glass.