The harvest produce in the Indiana markets has us in the mood for autumn cooking, even if the weather hasn’t quite caught up yet (though it’s starting to)! One of our favorite ways to prepare vegetables in the fall and winter months is roasting, which brings out a unique and delicious flavor from vegetables – sometimes surprisingly different from their taste raw or sauteed!
If you’re looking for a lovely, comforting aroma to fill your house, look no further than roasted vegetables! We were salivating while this dish was in the oven. While I must admit it takes a bit of time to chop all the vegetables (and generates quite a pile of peelings for your compost!), it’s all worth the effort when you smell the roasting in action – as well as when you taste it!
The basic idea for the recipe is to oven-roast vegetables with some seasonings, and then combine them with a grain. (We also added chickpeas to make it a more complete meal.) Our recipe uses a combination of butternut squash, fingerling potatoes, red onions, and cauliflower (which didn’t happen to be at the market, but seemed tasty!), as well as fresh rosemary from our garden. However, the idea has great potential for creativity, so use whatever vegetables are seasonal or your favorites!
Give it a try, and enjoy the roasted aroma!
Roasted Harvest Vegetables with Quinoa
Serves 4 as a main; around 8 as a side
What You Need
About 3 1/2 to 4 pounds vegetables – we used:
1 pound fingerling and/or red potatoes (about 3 cups chopped)
1 pound butternut squash (about 2 cups chopped)
1 medium head cauliflower (about 5 cups chopped)
2 medium red onions (about 4 cups sliced)
10 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary (or 2 teaspoons dried)
2 cups quinoa
1 15 ounce can chickpeas (about 1 1/2 cups cooked)
2 to 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (aged is best)
~4.5 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
Fresh ground pepper
Parchment paper or aluminum foil (optional)
What To Do
1 Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2 Chop the vegetables: Wash the vegetables. Peel the butternut squash, then scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Chop the squash, cauliflower, and potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Slice the red onions. Smash the garlic cloves; cut larger cloves in half. Chop the rosemary. This step may take a while, but never fear! Your work will be worth it when you smell the veggies roasting.
3 Season the vegetables: Place parchment paper or aluminum foil on two baking sheets (this step is optional, but helps with cleanup). Spread the veggies evenly between the two trays. Sprinkle each tray with olive oil, kosher salt, pepper, and rosemary and mix them with your hands to coat evenly (you can also do this in a large bowl). In total, we used about 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 2 teaspoons pepper between the two trays, but use whatever quantity works for you!
4 Roast the vegetables: Place the trays in the oven and roast about 45 to 50 minutes, stirring occasionally, until all vegetables are tender. You may need to rotate the trays during cooking depending on your oven. To determine whether they are done, sample a piece of the hardest seeming vegetable (potatoes in this case) and poke it with a fork to see if it is tender – then taste just to make sure!
5 Cook the quinoa: While the veggies are roasting, cook the quinoa using this method.
6 Assemble the dish: When the veggies are done, let them cool a bit. Then in a large bowl, combine the veggies with the cooked quinoa. Drain and rinse the can of chickpeas, add them to the mix, and stir everything to combine. Then add more seasonings to your liking – we added about 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, another 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon additional kosher salt. Serve warm.
Note: We found this dish tasted best the day we made it. Since the leftovers tend to get dry and lose a bit of flavor after keeping in the fridge, you may want to reheat them and add a bit more olive oil, vinegar, and/or salt and pepper to regain to flavor.