Roasting is a perfect alternative to grilling -- without the burnt, charred taste!
Each year, my summer garden produces a bountiful harvest of eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini and herbs. I cook them all summer long and savor the flavors.
I cook them in the oven instead of on the grill. It's almost impossible to avoid charring veggies when they're cooked directly on the grill and burnt food is bad for your health! A group of carcinogenic substances called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are produced when foods are charred/burnt. In the oven, the high, even temperature caramelizes the natural sugars to enhance each distinct flavor. It's also an easy way to enjoy a melange of fresh vegetables without too much fussing in the kitchen. The addition of local potatoes and mushrooms make this one-pan dish a crowd pleaser for simple summer entertaining.
Serve with any protein and you've got a well-balanced delicious and nutritious meal!
Layne's Summer Garden Veggie Roast
Choose organic ingredients when available:
- 2 carrots, diced into large bite size pieces
- 2 bell peppers, seeded and diced into large bite size pieces
- 3 new potatoes, diced into small bite size pieces
- 2 eggplants, diced into large bite size pieces
- 2 large zucchini, diced into large bite size pieces
- 1 cup shitake mushrooms (optional), cleaned
- 2 tomatoes, diced into large bite size pieces
- 2 tablespoons prepared pesto (or 2 tablespoons cold pressed extra virgin olive oil + 2 tablespoons chopped basil + sea salt to taste)
- Ground red pepper to taste (preferably Espelette)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius). In a large roasting pan, lined with foil, spread out the vegetables. Add pesto and pepper, and toss with (clean) hands to evenly coat the veggies. Roast for 45 to 50 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Tent the dish with foil if they brown too quickly.
Nutrition facts per serving based on using medium size vegetables (482 grams): 172 calories, 3 grams fat, 34 grams carbohydrates, 11.6 grams dietary fiber, 5.9 grams protein, 69 milligrams sodium, 105 percent DV for vitamin A, 161 percent DV for vitamin C.
For more healthy recipes for every meal of the day and to learn about the European Secrets Of The Super-Healthy, pick up a copy of my award winning diet lifestyle and cookbook: Beyond The Mediterranean Diet.