Sunday, August 22, 2010

Roasted Vegetables with Mint Yogurt Sauce

Two posts in one day!  My summer is officially ending on Tuesday so I'm trying to cram in as many posts as I can before then.  The inspiration for this recipe comes from The Boat Street Café in Seattle.  My mom had this when we were there for lunch a few weeks ago and I had order envy.  That is not to say that my lunch wasn’t excellent as well- I had a very yummy croque madame.  But the mint sauce on the roasted vegetables was so interesting and different!  I especially love it with the roasted cauliflower. 
I tried to approximate the dish from Boat Street as much as possible with a few changes.  I added brussel sprouts because I recently discovered that I like them when they are charred in the oven, and I also left out eggplant because sometimes I don’t like it…but feel free to add it if you want.  And any other vegetables for that matter.  I think parsnips and squash would be good in the winter. 
The tricky thing about this dish is that all of the vegetables cook at different rates and I didn’t want them to get mushy and overcooked.  I made a huge mess in the kitchen using different pans for each vegetable.  Luckily I was in my parents’ kitchen- I don’t even own that many roasting pans in mine!  I have tried to cut down on the mess for you by combining some of the vegetables in the recipe.  You can even do all of them in the same pan if you want- just add the quick cooking vegetables later on.  It is not imperative to eat the vegetables super hot so it’s ok for them to sit for a bit when they come out of the oven.
This was very healthy and despite the mess it was pretty easy.  I highly recommend it for a weeknight dinner.  It makes great leftovers for lunch the next day too.

Roasted Vegetables with Mint Yogurt Sauce
makes 4 servings
1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
½ lb brussel sprouts, halved
2 zucchini, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 summer squash, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 bunch of medium sized carrots (preferably multi-colored, I split the fatter ones in half)
½ cup roasted red peppers, cut into slices
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 cup cous cous
½ cup cranberries, roughly chopped
½ cup blanched almonds, toasted

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Put the carrots, brussel sprouts, and cauliflower in a large roasting pan and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.  In a separate pan, toss the zucchini and squash with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roast all of the vegetables, checking on them and stirring every 15 minutes.  Add the tomatoes to the pan with zucchini and squash right before they are done.  The cauliflower, carrot, brussel sprouts pan should take about 30 minutes or so.  I like my veggies crispy brown. 
Meanwhile, cook the cous cous and toss with a little sea salt and olive oil.  To plate, top the cous cous with lots of vegetables (don’t forget the roasted red peppers), cranberries, and almonds.  Serve with the yogurt sauce and enjoy.

Mint Yogurt Sauce
2 cups greek yogurt
5 or 6  fresh mint leaves (a little goes a long way)
Juice from 1 lemon
~1 teaspoon olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a small food processor and blend until smooth.  If you don’t have a food processor, you can just whisk the ingredients together (mince the mint first).   You can make the sauce in advance and keep it refrigerated.  Also, if you love yogurt sauces, you should probably double this.

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