Fast. Easy. Healthy. Scrumptious! Even the Official Recipe Tester, who doesn’t think a meal is complete without meat, loved this. Now, that’s saying something! The best part of this recipe is that there is no wrong way to make this. If you don’t want to heat up the kitchen, throw it on the outdoor grill. (Actually, throwing it on the outdoor grill makes it even better!) Don’t have the veggies I used? No problem; use what you already have in the fridge. Seriously! Seared lettuce is amazing! Check this out and please let me know about your own personal renditions! Inquiring Foodies want to know. 😉
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
2 cups vegetable broth (Can substitute chicken broth if you prefer.)
1 large bulb fennel
1 large onion, yellow or sweets
1/2 pound shitake or crimini mushrooms, large ones cut into quarters
2 pattypan squashes
1 yellow crookneck squash
1 eggplant, diced into 2″ cubes
Good-quality EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup roughly chopped fresh basil
2 sprigs rosemary, minced
2 lemons, juiced
2 tablespoons good balsamic vinegar
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Get out two 9″ x 13″ baking dishes.
Cut the eggplant into cubes, put into a large bowl and sprinkle the cut surfaces with salt. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes, then rinse under cold water. Discard any liquid that came out of the eggplant. Meanwhile, clean and chop the mushrooms, squashes, onion, and fennel into chunks roughly two to three inches across. Dump all the veggies into the two baking dishes making sure they have roughly the same amount and mix.
Mince the garlic and place into a small bowl. Add the minced rosemary, the fresh lemon juice and approximately 1/4 cup EVOO. Mix the garlic/lemon juice/EVOO with a fork and pour over the cut veggies in the baking dish. Using clean hands, gently mix the veggies making sure they are evenly covered with the herbal mix. Place into the hot oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes turning the veggies every 15 minutes.
Approximately 15 minutes before the veggies are done, put the rinsed quinoa into a medium sauce pot and pour the broth over the top. Place over a medium flame on the stove. Once the broth begins to boil, turn the flame down to low. Set the timer for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and fluff with a fork.
When the veggies are soft, gently move them into a large serving bowl, add in the cup of chopped basil leaves and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately over the quinoa. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional).