This was such a simple meal and it was surprisingly satisfying. It always amazes me that I can combine half a dozen different spices in a dish, add some extra time, and have it come out just so-so -- and then I turn around and prepare what I think of as an overly simple, low spice-enhanced dish, and it's fabulous. And everyone loves it. Kinda says something powerful, don't you think?
When I originally saw this recipe, I thought there were green beans in it. I would have sworn it. So when I went to buy the ingredients at the store, into the cart went fresh green beans. When I actually got around to making the dish, I was trying to figure out where the green beans went. Seeing as they didn't actually go anywhere, I added them in and loved the addition.
You'll notice in the picture that the vegetables are chopped and roasted in their long and pretty fashion. The next I make this, I'm making it easy on myself and on those eating the dish and making the green beans an inch in length and also chopping the carrots in narrow 1 inch "wedges" -- still will look pretty but, my goodness, it'll be much easier for the littles to eat!
The clincher in this dish is the balsamic glaze/reduction -- very easy to make, but time consuming. So, if you have about 5 dollars to spare, you can buy a bottle at your local market and thank me later. Seriously, time in money and when it comes to reductions...I'm buying. So don't skip this ingredient -- it's what "makes" this dish amazing.
In the fall, this dish will be fantastic along side a creamy pureed vegetable (read: Butternut or Sweet Potato) soup.
Quinoa with Roasted Eggplant and Beans
- 1 1/2 cups dry quinoa, rinsed well
- 3 cups water/broth mixture (I used 2 cups broth, 1 cup water)
- 1 medium eggplant cut into 1 inch chunks, skins on (6 cups)
- 1 cup sliced/chunked red onion
- 2 1/2 cups 1 inch pieces of fresh green beans
- 2 1/2 cups 1/2 inch chopped carrots
- 2 cans great northern beans, rinsed and drained
- balsamic glaze, 3-4 TBLS to start
-- Cook the quinoa in the broth/water in a rice cooker or on the stovetop according to directions until liquid is absorbed and quinoa is fully cooked
-- Using 2 trays that are covered with parchment paper or a Silpat and a light spray of cooking oil spray, evenly lay out the veggies between the two trays
-- Roast veggies for 30 minutes @400 degrees. Take out, toss, and evenly distribute the beans between the two trays
-- Return trays to the oven and roast for another 20 minutes. The vegetables should be golden brown and great northern beans should be amazingly split open
-- In a large serving bowl, combine the quinoa with veggies and gently stir to combine. Drizzle the glaze/reduction and stir.
-- Season with salt and pepper and add more glaze if desired.