Hardly a day goes past this time of the year when I don’t have something fresh from the garden. The possibilities are endless when you have a the likes of tomatoes, beans, summer squash, peppers and onions.
I just finished off a big bowl of steamed green and yellow beans that was tossed with a little butter and seasoned with salt, pepper and white wine vinegar. A tomato on the side completed my all-vegetarian lunch.
I’ve been doing a bit of digging lately for some new recipes to try, especially ones that include eggplant, since a bumper crop of the purple beauty is imminent. Here’s a pasta dish that caught my eye that also includes zucchini, onion, basil and tomatoes. (You could use whichever vegetable combination you want for this dish.) The vegetables are roasted before being combined with cooked pasta such as fusilli and then topped with Parmesan cheese.
Pasta with Roasted Vegetables and Basil
¼ cup olive oil, divided
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Favorite all-purpose seasoning
4 yellow summer squash or zucchini (about 1¼ pounds total), cut into 1-inch cubes
2 medium red or white onions, halved and sliced ½-inch thick
1 pint grape tomatoes, rinsed
8 ounces short pasta, such as cavatappi or fusilli
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
1 cup torn fresh basil leaves
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Have ready 2 large (10-by-15-inch) rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil on one large rimmed baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the oven while it’s preheating. Prepare all the vegetables.
When the oven is preheated, remove the baking sheet and quickly add the eggplant cubes and garlic to the baking sheet (they will sizzle) and season with salt, pepper and seasoning. Using tongs, toss quickly, but carefully because the oil is hot. Return to the oven and roast until the eggplant is just tender, but not mushy, about 20 minutes.
On the other baking sheet, place summer squash or zucchini, onions and tomatoes. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper and seasoning. Toss to coat. Place in the oven and roast until the vegetables are just tender and still hold their shape, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook until al dente, according to package instructions. Drain, and return to pot.
Add vegetables, butter, Parmesan and basil to pasta; season with salt and pepper, and toss gently to combine. Serve with more cheese if desired.
Yield: Serves 4.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 474 calories, 38 percent of calories from fat, 20 grams fat (7 grams saturated), 60 grams carbohydrates, 16 grams protein, 626 milligrams sodium, 24 milligrams cholesterol, 6 grams fiber.