Ode to Summer: Roasted Vegetable Salad
I cannot stress enough how useful Whitewater Cooks at Home, the book from which I adapted my recipe for the tomato tart on my last post, has been to me, especially when it comes to cooking with fresh, seasonal homegrown vegetables. Not only have I loved everything that have I cooked from this book but also its amazing recipes have become a regular part of my repertoire ever since this book flew into my life. Whether you’re looking for starters, salads, soups, sides, entire dinners or desserts; I’m sure you will find something hearty and fulfilling for you. As a matter of fact, I’m already planning to make “Marie’s Rosemary Nut Crackers” to accompany my most recent favourite cheese, Chateau de Bourgogne!
I feel that now is an appropriate time to create an ode to summer by making another great recipe from the book because all the vegetables for this recipe are currently in their prime. This dish is often made in the midst of winter with stored vegetables which are paired with the central protein, but really I believe that preparing this dish during summer is the best way to celebrate the gardening season’s peak. Oh, summer, please don’t go yet!
Roasted Vegetable Salad
I have made this dish a number of times for occasions like the Thanksgivings, and have found that adding small cubed vegetables renders a crisper finished salad with a better overall texture. In contrast, the bigger the cubes, the mushier the salad becomes. I also strongly suggest that you source the very best quality balsamic vinegar and olive oil, because the flavours of these components are directly and notably reflected in the completed salad.
Serves 6 to 8
1 large yam potato, peeled and diced into 1 inch cubes
1 fennel bulb, quartered and sliced into ¼ inch pieces
1 red onion, chopped into 1 inch dices
2 red peppers, chopped into 1 inch dices
2 yellow zucchini, cut into 1 inch rounds if thin, or 1 inch cubes if thick
2 cups mushrooms, quartered
2 egg plants, diced into 1 inch cubes
4 beets, peeled and quartered
½ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 large garlic clove, minced
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 ½ tablespoons grainy Dijon mustard
1 large garlic clove, minced
¼ teaspoon sea salt or to your taste
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ to 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup fresh basil, julienned
Preheat the oven to 375F.
Place the yam potato in one bowl and beets in another bowl, then add the remaining vegetables in another bowl too.
Whisk together the oil, salt, pepper and garlic, and divide between the three bowls. Mix well to coat the vegetables all around.
Place the yam and beets on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, leaving some room between the two vegetables so that the beets don’t run into the yam. Place the rest of the vegetables on another parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
Roast for about 20 to 25 minutes or until tender. Remove the fennel and onion mixture from the oven, and leave the beets and yams to crisp up for another 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool.
Mix all the ingredients of the dressing in a small bowl, and whisk well until emulsified. When the vegetables reach room temperature, place them in a large bowl, leaving the beets until the last. Drizzle the dressing and gently combine. Serve on a large platter and scatter the basil over top.
Adapted from Whitewater Cooks at Home.