Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic Reduction
©2013 PAULDING & CO. — a full catering kitchen based in San Francisco. Reprinted with permission.
The vegetables for this dish can vary with the season, whatever you most like, and what is fresh in the market. The main thing is to make sure that each is roasted to the perfect point of doneness, which will take a few separate pans.
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 small, firm globe eggplant
handful small sweet red peppers
2 ripe tomatoes, if in season
1 red onion or bunch spring onions
12 asparagus spears, if in season
2 medium zucchini
and/or other vegetables of choice
1 portobello mushroom (optional)
salt & freshly ground pepper
extra virgin olive oil, as needed
2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
A day in advance, pour the balsamic vinegar into a shallow pan. Let sit uncovered at room temperature overnight. You will have thick balsamic syrup by morning! Pack this into a jar or squeeze bottle. If it's too thick, thin with a little bit more vinegar.
Prepare several baking sheets, by covering them with parchment and brushing the parchment generously with olive oil. Preheat oven to 375°F.
Cut vegetables into medium-thick slices. Leave portobello whole, but trim stem. Place tomatoes, onion and mushroom on one oiled sheet. Place eggplant on another oiled baking sheet with the peppers and asparagus. Place zucchini and sweetpotato slices on another sheet. Brush or drizzle all the vegetables with oil. Lightly salt each pan of vegetables, and put in the oven to roast.
Roast until vegetables are lightly golden. Eggplants should be soft, and tomatoes may become very soft. This should take from 15-25 minutes, depending on oven conditions and thickness of slices. Once the mushroom is done, slice it neatly.
Arrange vegetables into a "tapestry" on a platter. Before serving, dress with the balsamic and garnish with parsley. Makes 6 generous servings.
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Quote of the Month
"The major cruelties practiced on animals in civilized countries today arise out of commercial exploitation, and the fear of losing profits is the chief obstacle to reform." —C.W. Hume (1886-1981) author, speaker, and founder of UFAW