Roasted vegetables are winter’s answer to grilled vegetables. In some parts of the country, the flowers are blooming and flip-flops are still appropriate footwear. But up here, we awoke to a world coated in white. Winter has arrived. And when the weather gets cold and the grill has been packed away for the season, it’s time to fire up the oven for some sweet roasted vegetables. The best part about roasting veggies is that it has the ability to coax some fantastic flavor out of some normally lackluster winter produce.
I love roasted vegetables on ciabatta bread with fresh mozzarella and pesto, toasted in the oven. Yum! It’s one of my favorite sandwiches in the world. But today we’re adding our delicious roasted veggies to a pesto pasta dish for a cold weather version of Pasta Primavera.
Roasted Vegetable Pasta Primavera
- 1 Squash, cut in half lengthwise and sliced into half-moons
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, cut in half, seeds and ribs removed
- 1 1/2 cups Grape Tomatoes, rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups small Mushrooms, rinsed
- 2-3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 pound Pasta
For the Pesto:
- 1 big bunch of basil
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup parmesan (or parmesan cheese blend)
- 1 Tbsp minced garlic
- 6 Tbps+ olive oil
- Salt and Pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss the vegetables in olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Place the pepper halves cut side down. Cook for 20-35 minutes. The squash will probably be ready in about 20-25 minutes. The remaining veggies will take longer. Remove the veggies from the oven. Place the pepper halves in a ziploc bag to help the skin to pucker as it cools. Season the remaining veggies in a bit of salt and pepper. When the pepper has cooled, remove from the ziploc and peel away the skin. Cut the pepper into small pieces.
Cook the pasta according the package directions. While the pasta is cooking, prepare the pesto. Pull the basil leaves off of the stem. Place in a food processor and pulse slightly, giving the leaves a course chop. Add all other ingredients, except the oil, and mix until well blended. Gradually incorporate the oil until you reach your desired consistency. Taste and adjust seasonings.
When the pasta has finished cooking, strain and return to the pot. Toss the pasta with some of the pesto and the roasted veggies. Serve hot with grated parmesan cheese.
Serves about 6