10 Roasted Vegetable Recipe Ideas

Every year, I fall into a bit of a funk as the sweet summer produce slowly disappears at the market, and is replaced by… root vegetables. So many root vegetables. All of the root vegetables.

Don’t get me wrong. I love squash and beets and sweet potatoes and the rest of ’em. But on month three of roasted veggies, it’s hard to muster the same enthusiasm as I did at the beginning of the season.

To avoid dying of boredom (or just indulging in all the mashed potatoes, pot pies, and mac and cheese I really want to eat all winter), I’ve been experimenting with new ways to use roasted veggies.

The basic idea is this: make a pan or two of assorted vegetables (plus some sautéed greens if you have them). How to Roast Any Vegetable from The Kitchn is an excellent overview of how to do this like a pro. Then mix and match recipes throughout the week, and give yourself a gold star for being such a responsible adult.

Roasted Veggie Recipes

10 Ways to Use Roasted Veggies

 

1. Spicy Veggie Bowls

Layer veggies on a bed of grains – like whole-wheat couscous or bulgur. Drizzle with plain Greek yogurt mixed with harissa or sriracha.

2. Goat Cheese Polenta & Veggies

Make a quick pot of cheesy polenta, and serve with vegetables.

3. Pasta

Cook pasta, toss with olive oil or butter, and mix in vegetables. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and fresh ground pepper.

4. Tacos

Combine Meatless Monday and Taco Tuesday, replacing the standard ground taco meat with roasted veggies. Serve with all your favorite fixins: salsa, avocado, sour cream, pickled onions, jalapeños and cheese.

5. Pizza

Roll out homemade or store-bought pizza dough; cover with tomato sauce, roasted veggies and cheese, and bake. (If you have a cast iron skillet, I highly recommend the insanely delicious Foolproof Pan Pizza recipe from Serious Eats.)  The picture below is a variation loosely based on the flavors of tarte flambée (Alsatian tart): crème fraîche, roasted veggies, sautéed Swiss chard, queso fresco and crispy pancetta.

Roasted Veggie Pizza

6. Omelets

Jazz up a plain omelet with roasted vegetables and goat cheese.

7. Vegetarian Curry

Sauté chopped onions in olive oil until they soften. Add a few spoonfuls of curry paste or powder, and cook another minute. Mix in a can of coconut milk and roasted vegetables. Simmer for 10 minutes; serve over rice or noodles.

8. Sandwiches

Spread hearty bread with a flavorful sauce, like pesto, romesco, hummus or tapenade. Add a layer of roasted vegetables, and drizzle with olive oil and vinegar.

9. Salad

Spoon veggies onto a bowl of mixed greens, lettuce or spinach. Add nuts, crumbled cheese and vinaigrette.

10. Soup

Bring chicken or vegetable broth to a boil. Add dry pasta and cook till not quite al dente. Stir in veggies, and cook until heated through.

 

These ideas barely scratch the surface of the possibilities. What are your favorite ways to use roasted veggies?

Goat Cheese Polenta with Roasted Vegetables

Goat Cheese Polenta with Roasted Veggies

If you want to offend an Italian, refer to polenta as “Italian grits.” I’m guessing. I’ve never actually had the guts to do this, after getting burned making a similar wine faux pas a few years ago:

Me: I love Primitivo wine. I think it’s made from the same grape as Zinfandel, which we produce in my hometown in California!

Primitivo Winemaker: **look of disdain/horror** We have been making Primitivo wines for thousands of years. It is not the same as this Zinfandel.

Me: …… [nods/ hangs head in shame/ holds out empty glass for more]

But really, polenta – long a staple in Northern Italian cuisine – is just coarsely ground cornmeal. Just like grits. Depending on where I’m living and what’s available at the store, I use Italian polenta and American cornmeal interchangeably. Both are easy and affordable to prepare. Both make a rich, hearty porridge when cooked in liquid. And both absolutely benefit from generous helpings of butter, salt and cheese.

Roasted Veggies

In wintertime, I love to serve polenta with braised short ribs or some other meaty sauce. But as the weather gets warmer, polenta is an ideal base for lighter vegetable-based dishes. This version combines simple roasted spring veggies with creamy, cheesy polenta. I advise making extra for leftovers.

Goat Cheese Polenta with Roasted Veggies

Goat Cheese Polenta with Roasted Vegetables

Total Time: 40 minutes

Serving Size: 4

Ingredients

    Fresh vegetables*, cut into 1-inch chunks:
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 8 oz/ 226 g snap peas
  • 16 oz/ 453 g button mushrooms
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 small zucchini
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Polenta:
  • 1 cup polenta, or coarse-ground cornmeal
  • 4 cups water
  • 6 oz/ 170 g goat cheese
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan + extra for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • Sauce
  • 16 oz./ 453 g jarred or homemade marinara sauce, heated

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F/ 204 degrees C.
  2. Place vegetables in 2 roasting pans: the asparagus and snap peas in one pan, and the rest of the veggies in another (the first pan might not take as long to cook as the heartier vegetables). Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes, or until veggies are lightly caramelized and tender.
  3. Meanwhile, start the polenta. In a saucepan, bring the water to boil over medium heat. Add a dash of salt, then slowly pour in the polenta, whisking to break up lumps. Let polenta cook, stirring occasionally, until it is soft and thick and starting to pull away from the edges of the pan (around 20 minutes). Stir in butter, goat cheese and 1/4 cup grated Parmesan until combined. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Spoon the polenta onto plates or shallow bowls. Top with marinara sauce, roasted veggies and grated Parmesan.

Notes

*You can vary the veggies depending on what you have, and what’s in season.

http://www.travelingtotaste.com/2017/04/04/goat-cheese-polenta-with-roasted-vegetables/

This is what we signed up for.

beets beets beets beets
CSA Experiment #1

As previously reported,  we recently joined a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). We had a couple of reasons for doing so, but one of them was to push ourselves into cooking with things we don’t normally buy.

Challenge number one: Beets.

Neither of us had any experience with buying and/or cooking beets, so when basket #1 arrived with two of them we did what reasonable people do: we left them on the counter for days hoping they would prepare themselves to be eaten.

This did not work, and eventually we took to the interwebs to look for creative solutions, and I was surprised to find there are lots of amazing-looking dishes to be made using beets.

Not really following any one of them in particular, the beet preparation went like this:

Beet and Goat Cheese Crostini

Ingredients

  • Beets
  • Olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Goat cheese
  • Salt and pepper
  • Sliced bread

Instructions

  1. Heat a small frying pan with a little olive oil
  2. Trim the skin off of the beets (beware, this will make your hands and your cutting surface red)
  3. Cut beets into small cubes
  4. Sauté on low heat until the beets are tender (about 40 minutes)
  5. Remove tender beets and add a few heavy dashes of salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar and olive oil
  6. Use an immersion blender (or food processor or blender) to purée until smooth
  7. On a piece of sliced bread, add a splash of balsamic vinegar, spread a hearty portion of goat cheese, and then spread the beet purée
  8. Consume and repeat step seven until you run out of one or all of the ingredients
  9. (Several recipes suggest wrapping the beets in aluminum foil and baking in place of sautéing, and I’m sure there are merits to both.)
http://www.travelingtotaste.com/2014/09/13/this-is-what-we-signed-up-for/

The end result is pictured above and turned out surprisingly well.

The moral of the story is get out there and try cooking with something new, even (or especially) if you don’t know where to start with it. It doesn’t need to be fancy or complicated, but playing with a new ingredient can open the door to a variety of other ways to prepare it.

Now I’m actually looking forward to the next time beets show up in the basket so we can make something crazy, like beet and goat cheese ravioli.

Joining a CSA in Barcelona

I have a very important announcement to make. Brian and I just joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). It’s just a few blocks away from our apartment in the Gràcia neighborhood of Barcelona, I walk by it every day and I can’t believe it’s taken us so long to sign up.

Every Tuesday will henceforth be known as “Christmas.”

CSA in Barcelona

Els Bandolers de Gràcia
El Carrer Verdi 12
08012 Barcelona
Phone: 93 217 27 85
elsbandolersalcamp@gmail.com

Hours:
Monday to Thursday: 11:00 – 22:00
Friday and Saturday: 11:00 – 15:00, 17:00 – 22:00. Closed Sundays.

Els Bandolers de Gràcia is a great little store where you can buy produce and local artisan products, such as wine, beer, honey and chocolate. The produce comes from local and organic farms in Catalunya, and the CSA is a fantastic deal. Here’s how it works:

1. You sign up and pay a 30-euro registration fee, which includes two baskets – cestas – (you trade an empty one for a magically full one each week).
2. You choose either Tuesdays or Thursdays to pick up your cesta.
3. You pay each week when you get your basket. We signed up for the pequeña, which is still a ton of food for two people and costs 13 euros. The media is 18.50 euros and the grande is 28 euros.

We are only two weeks into our membership, and I already notice an improvement in our enthusiasm and creativity with preparing fresh fruits and vegetables. It’s like a game show: race against the clock to figure out A) what things are and B) how to combine them in an edible fashion.

Mystery greens? Braise them with pancetta, olive oil and balsamic! Potatoes and onions? Breakfast fries! Insanely delicious ripe plums? Eat as many as you can in one sitting, then make a quick stovetop jam with the rest before they go bad! Everything else? Throw it in a pot, you’ve got yourself a stew!

If you’re looking for a CSA in Barcelona, this place is glorious.