I’m a sucker for roasted veggies! It doesn’t matter what time of year it is cause there’s always a veggie ready to be roasted. In the winter, you can’t go wrong with some butternut squash, in the summer I love roasting fresh green beans with garlic, so why not start out the 1st of Feb with a bit of roasting medley magic?!
The veggies speak for themselves. One of my favorite parts of cooking with fresh, whole foods is that the ingredients usually do speak for themselves. Keeping it simple with the addition of a complimentary flavor or two does the trick to compose a one of kind, delicious dinner. Vegetables are already fresh, flavorful, & bold in color so roasting them up brings out another depth while adding a bit of crispyiness.
Not only is this recipe a super easy meal to whip up any week night, but it is also diverse. It can be served alone making it a vegetarian friendly meal, as a side to accompany another veggie & meat, or fancy it up for a special, “not your typical weekday kind of night”. I mean, it is February…
Valentine’s Dinner Idea: Roasted vegetable macaroni with seared sea bass paired with white wine
Prepping the Eggplant
Eggplant has a spondge-like texture making it ideal for absorbing extra pops of flavor from other ingredients added to a dish. Sometimes, however, it can be tricky to avoid a mushy texture after cooked. Part of the sondge-like texture of this vegetable comes from the moisture in the white flesh. Removing some of the moisture before cooking the eggplant can prevent a mushy texture or excess moisture released into the dish while cooking.
Salt releases moisture. Once the eggplant is chopped into the desired size, set aside with a heavy sprinkle of salt for about 30 minutes. After the eggplant has sat with the salt, squeeze by the handfuls to easily release & drain excess moisture. Note: I do not salt eggplant before cooking for all dishes.
Roasted Vegetable Pasta
- 1 lg eggplant
- 1 red bell pepper
- 2 cups brussel sprouts
- 4 garlic cloves
- 4oz macaroni
- 1 tbsp + 2 tsp olive oil
- 2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan
- salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Chop eggplant into 1/2 inch sized pieces, toss with salt, & set aside in colander for 30 minutes.
- Chop bell pepper & brussel sprouts into 1/2 pieces as well. Brussel sprout layers will separate a bit. Place on sheet pan.
- Mince garlic & add to sheet pan.
- After 30 minutes, squeeze eggplant by the handfuls for excess liquid to be released. Add to sheet pan.
- Toss vegetables on sheet pan with 1tbsp olive oil, basil, & red pepper flakes. Roast for about 35 minutes until all vegetables are tender & slightly crisp.
- While vegetables are roasting, boil macaroni for about 10 minutes until tender. Drain water from pot then toss macaroni with remaining 2 tsp olive oil & a dash of salt.
- Remove vegetables from oven & add to pasta along with the parmesan. Toss & enjoy!