Looking back over my last few meals (and posts), I’ve realized roasted has trounced the classic steam in my kitchen, and has become my new go-to for veggies. The oven becomes a miraculous tool in terms of drawing flavor from veggies. It’s not only the mastermind behind metamorphosing batter into sweet confections of sugar and flour. The oven is also the ultimate sugar-engineer of vegetables.
Take a bite of raw garlic, and your taste-buds might scream from its pungency. But give the bulb a roast, and each creamy, sweet clove will graciously go down with ease.
Olive oil, heat, and a little salt. It’s that simple. And this trick holds true for eggplant, onions, peppers, and a slew of other veggies, including beets, which when even when raw one wonders how they could become any sweeter.
So here we go again, another roasted vegetable inspired meal. I’ve gone back at it with roasted eggplant and garlic, sealing them all up with a few other ingredients inside a pepper. Then, I put the oven to use once more, and baked the whole dish. Topped with Daiya, this was yet another satisfying, vegan roasted meal.
- -2 large bell peppers, or 3 medium, tops and seeds removed
- -4 cloves garlic, chopped into pieces (see directions)
- -1 medium-large eggplant, cut into 1/3-inch slices
- -1 medium tomato
- -1 1/4 cup cooked brown rice
- -2 Tbsp. parsley
- -1/2 slightly heaping tsp. cumin
- -3 Tbsp. walnuts, chopped
- -Cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
- -Salt, to taste
- -1/2 cup Daiya cheese
- -Olive oil
- Fill large pot with water and bring to a boil. Place peppers in pot, and blanch for 7 minutes. Remove from water and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly coat eggplant with oil. Wedge garlic pieces into eggplant. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake 20-30 minutes, or until tender. Remove from oven.
- Dice eggplant into bite-sized pieces. Toss with rice, parsley, cumin, walnuts, tomato, and cayenne, if using. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Reduce oven to 350F. Lightly grease baking dish. Stuff peppers to the top with eggplant-rice mixture and place in baking dish. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until fork tender. Top each pepper with 1/4 cup of cheese, pushing the Daiya down into the top of the pepper. Return to oven, and bake 2-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Serve.