Yeah, yeah, I know that you know that I LOVE roasting vegetables. Honestly, it's one of the easiest, most efficient and delicious ways to cook them. All the work is done for you. Place 'em on a pan with the magic 3 (oil, salt & pepper), slide into a 400 degree oven and done and done.
Knowing this, you won't be surprised that I've come up with 3 more ways to serve up roasted vegetables. This was yet another time when we had a handful of unused items from a party that needed to be cooked up. As usual when I looked at these, I wasn't sure what their final use would be, but before they went bad they needed one last curtain call.
The stars of this day's performance: Introducing the Carrot, The Vine Tomato, The Beet, The Yellow Pepper and of course, Miss Fennel.
Lunch Performance #1 - The Stack 'em Up Sandwich
Place a few of the roasted tomatoes in a small food processor along with crushed garlic, pinch of salt and 2-3 T olive oil. Pulse until you get a chunky paste.
Place a few slices of your favorite cheese on one side of the bread and broil it until the cheese is melted. (I used Ojeva Negra, an earthy Spanish sheep's milk cheese.)
Add a smattering of the tomato-garlic 'jam' and begin stacking the veggies onto your sandwich. From here you can begin diving in or take it the next step and panini it. This earthy, crunchy lunch was for JC since I don't eat bread. Sucks for me.
Lunch Performance #2 - Quinoa Bowl
Cook up your favorite quinoa. I used an organic multi grain one. Ready up your roasted veggies and cut into bite sized pieces.
Once quinoa is cooked, arrange in a the bowl, top the quinoa with the tomato 'jam' and dig in.
Lunch Performance #3 - Pasta Toss
I don't need to tell you that this was my favorite. I'm such a pasta monster. You can use whatever type of pasta floats your boat. Semolina is still my favorite but I can't eat wheat anymore so I cooked up some brown rice elbow macaroni.
While the pasta was cooking, I sautéed 1/4 c chopped shallots, 2 cloves chopped garlic and some left over grape tomatoes equally about 2/3 cup. (Again, any amount that you have will work, so don't worry so much about amount here.) Once those were soft, I added all the other roasted vegetables that I chopped into bite sized pieces.
To add a bit more heartiness as well as creaminess, I added a can of baby cannellini beans with their liquid, and a touch more salt & good amount of crushed red pepper.
Then came the star of this show. Can you tell I like pasta? In went the cooked elbow macaroni. Add whatever shape you like and gently stir together.
Plate it up in a nice serving bowl and grate some Locatelli cheese on top. This was satisfyingly yummy. Add a glass of red wine, and you'll have a Joie de Vivre lunch, for sure.
I hope you love roasting vegetables as much as I do. They are so adaptable to so many dishes. Be forewarned, roasted and grilled vegetables will make encore presentations in the future... and often. Why not, their versatility is not to be reckoned with. Get your veggie on!
P.S. The roasted potatoes were not called upon for lunches, but did make their appearance as a side dish for dinner. Plus a few were eaten right out of the oven while making the lunches. Seriously, who could resist those crunchy bites.