Too much zucchini? I had a modest harvest that I am very pleased with. In addition to my swiss chard, garlic, tomato and zucchini, I also used some beautiful Japanese eggplants in this salad. The Japanese variety grows in a shape similar to the zucchini so that when sliced they were in perfect 1 1/2″ discs instead of too much mushy, meaty eggplant. These are certainly on the keep list for next years garden. They are in the photo next to my white rat (ineffective rabbit repellent), mexican sage (attracts butterflies…unless they are frightened by white rat) and snap dragons.
This new recipe was born of necessity. We went to a family picnic on Sunday. Oh yes, you know the type. . . ribs, burgers, stuffed shells, casseroles . . . mac and cheese to die for (think I took a week off my life with the serving I ate). I tried to make something healthy to fill my plate but the mac and cheese would have none of it! This is a wonderful salad and served with garden fresh veggies that are packed full of vitamins. It has quinoa as a bonus!!!
Quinoa is a super old grain that is a complete protein, less the legs and eyes, that is also gluten free. You body will say thanks for eating this grain and so will your heart…unless you smoke or eat too much mac and cheese in which case your body will say why bother, pass the cupcakes.
Roasted zucchini, eggplant and quinoa salad
- 1 1/2c zucchini, 1″ cubes
- 1 1/2c eggplant, 1″ cubes
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- extra virgin olive oil
preheat oven to 425 degrees. spray the pan with a non-stick spray or lightly coat with olive oil. very lightly drizzle the veggies with olive oil and toss in the pan with the garlic and a pinch of salt and fresh cracked pepper. too much oil will make your veggies soggy so less is more and add it if you feel they need it. roast until they are light golden. be careful of oven steam, the zucchini has loads of moisture.
- 1/2 c quinoa, red or white, dry
- 1 c water (with some fresh herbs to season the grain as it cooks) or broth
rinse the quinoa in cool water until the water runs clear. this removes the naturally occurring saponin that coats the grain and sometimes gives it a bitter flavor and acts as the plant’s natural bug repellent. in a small saucepan bring the water to a boil, add the gluten free quinoa and cover. Reduce to simmer for 10-15 minutes. leaving the lid on remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. fluff with fork after uncovered. set aside to cool with the roasted veggies in a mixing bowl.
- 1 cup whole wheat pasta, cooked
- 1 handful fresh tomatoes, chopped
- 2 cups swiss chard, chopped or course julienne
- 2 scallions, white and green parts, sliced
- zest of one lemon
- 3 T basil, julienned
mix with the veggies and quinoa.
- juice of 1 lemon
- splash of white wine vinegar
- olive oil to taste
- 1 tsp grainy mustard
- salt and pepper to taste