Harvest Roast

Do you guys ever just roast a bunch of veggies and pig out for dinner? That's the plan we had today after a lovely soujourn to the farmer's market. I wound up getting 10 eggplants and 7 yellow squash for 8 dollars from one vendor, a huge mess of turnips and greens, plus daikon, for 3 dollars, a massive bag of okra for 5 dollars. Etc. So this seemed a good time to just revel in the freshness of the food which was available, and also to clean out a couple other items from the fridge. P wanted this on rice, because he felt rice would fit better in the diet he's made me put him on (he claims to have gained 30 pounds since he met me, which is probably true but which I consider to be a sign of good eating rather than of weighing too much. This is not how he views it) than the simmered spelt, couscous or other type of pasta I'd originally planned to serve it with. I haven't had rice in a while, so really, it's a win. My mother sent me a big 2.5-3 quart ceramic casserole, and this is how I broke it in. I stuffed it so full I actually had to bake it for a while to cook it down a bit, before adding in all the other goodies. The thing I didn't like about this was that it actually didn't have quite enough lemon for my tastes. If I'd thought it through, I'd have added a whole preserved lemon instead of half, or just the half and some extra lemon juice. If you're not a lemon freak though, this should be just right for you. I hope you enjoy.

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large handfuls whole garlic cloves
1 medium red onion, sliced into thick half moons
1 small head cauliflower, cut up (about 2 cups worth)
2 cups celery, cut into 2" pieces
1-2 yellow squash, cut into thick rounds (maybe 3/8"?)
1-2 ichiban eggplants (or whatever you've got), cut into rounds like the squash
3-4 turnips, scrubbed and cut into 6ths
1 large beet, peeled and sliced into sticks
1 large red potato, sliced into rounds
1 large roma tomato, sliced into rounds
pinch salt

1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 preserved lemon, sliced into thin strips
1 tablespoons rinsed capers
pinch saffron
1/4 teaspoon tumeric
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon crushed grains of paradise (sub: black peppercorns)

Heat oven to 400F. Put the whole first group into a large casserole dish and toss with hands to evenly coat with oil. Roast 40 minutes. Bring the second group of ingredients to a boil and simmer until fragrant. Pour over vegetables and stir to coat evenly. Roast another hour, stirring every twenty minutes. Drain all the juice in the bottom of your cooking dish and boil it down to a thicker sauce. Serve with rice or other grains (I spooned the sauce over the rice, too). Serves 4.


  1. I'm not going to lie...this is what I'm talking about. This is exactly what I'd like to see first thing in the morning.


  2. Thanks, Darius! The saffron really does make all the difference here, making it seem so luxurious!


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