Sep 21, 2009

Roasted Summer Vegetables


There seems to be a chill in the air here. I’m never quite sure what to cook around this time of year. Or what to wear, for that matter. It’s not nearly cold enough for typical autumn food (or a coat), but it’s not really BBQ (& tank top) kinda weather anymore either.

Then it hit me: roasted summer vegetables. The perfect middle ground and absolute best of both seasons.



5 or 6 tomatoes (I’ve used pomodori)
1 large onion
1 (or 2) red bell pepper
1 zucchini
1 fennel bulb
coarse sea salt
black pepper
2 tbsp oil

Basil dressing:

15 basil leaves
3 tbsp pine nuts
2 garlic cloves
5 tbsp oil



Here’s some of the stuff I’ll be putting in my roasting tray. Aren’t these colors amazing?


I’ve opted for sweet pointed peppers. One large red sweet pepper and I also threw in a few of those cute tiny sweet orange peppers. Cut them in strips.


And fennel. You must have fennel! Your life will be meaningless without the fennel because nothing beats roasted fennel. Nothing, nothing, nothing. Okay, so maybe Pringles, but that’s it.


Cut off the stalks. Discard the unpretty outer layer, cut off its bottom and turn the fennel into wedges.


Turn the onion into wedges as well.


Wash and slice the zucchini.


And wash the tomatoes before turning them into wedges. I opted for gorgeous, sweet and deep red pomodori tomatoes. The juices that ooze out of these babies are simply irresistible.


Throw it all into a large roasting tray or oven dish.


Pour about 2 tbsp oil over the vegetables and toss them around a little to get an even coating. Sprinkle a generous amount of coarse sea salt and black pepper on top.


Place the roasting tray in a preheated oven and roast the vegetables at 400F (200C) for 35 to 45 minutes. Until tender, juicy and slightly browned.


In the mean time we’ll make the dressing, or sauce if you will. Roasted vegetables don’t need much adornment, but fresh herbs never hurt anyone so we’ll make a basic basil dressing. Toast 3 tbsp pine nuts in a dry skillet until slightly brown.


Transfer the pine nuts to an immersion blender bowl, blender or food processor. Pick some fresh basil leaves, about 12 to 15 decent sized leaves.


Chop 2 medium garlic cloves in coarse pieces. Add the garlic to the blender bowl.


Add some salt and pepper, the fresh basil, 5 tbsp olive oil and pulse, pulse pulse.


Until it’s a flavorful, fragrant and wonderfully green dressing. Pour the dressing over the vegetables as soon as they come out of the oven. This is so frickin delicious.


Serve with grilled meat/poultry and a huge chunk of flat-bread for dipping those awesome pomodori infused juices, just as addictive as my Beef Sausages & Balsamic Tomatoes. This kind of food is love, people. Pure unadulterated love.

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    1. 1

      Oh YUM Kay, those look amazing! Can’t wait to try it once all our summer vegies start appearing! And that basil dressing looks like it’s based on a Pesto – would you agree?

      LizzieBee on Sep 21, 2009 @ 1:39 pm Reply
    2. 2

      You’re right. Nothing beats roasted fennel. Love it. Then add all that other wonderful goodness to the pan and, oh man, this must be heaven on a plate!

      Lana on Sep 21, 2009 @ 2:47 pm Reply
    3. 3

      I’d be happy with having this for dinner.. my husband- not so much!

      I love your green-handled knife, and can you believe I’ve never had roasted fennel? I’ll def. be throwing that in next time I roast up some veggies.

      Lori @ RecipeGirl on Sep 21, 2009 @ 4:05 pm Reply
    4. 4

      I am going to have to differ from you on the fennel issue, can’t stand the stuff, but I love roasted veggies and this looks good. We prefer veggies roasted this way to the traditional accompaniments with a Sunday roast, much to my mother in-law’s horror!

      Louise on Sep 21, 2009 @ 5:18 pm Reply
    5. 5

      I never tried to roast my vegetables.
      Good tip!

      Fernanda on Sep 21, 2009 @ 10:01 pm Reply
    6. 6

      Gosh, I love this time of year. The vegetables are so wonderful! And your photos are so amazing.

      The Italian Dish on Sep 22, 2009 @ 1:39 am Reply
    7. 7

      we roast vegetables often as many have mentioned they are specially tasty this time of year.

      Must also rebuke the fennel, not a favorite……………your dressing looks like something I should try…….thanks!

      doodles on Sep 22, 2009 @ 5:15 am Reply
    8. 8

      Sounds wonderful. We do a lot of roasted veggies, but this combination isn’t something we’ve tried before. Looking forward to tasting it.

      Karen on Sep 22, 2009 @ 2:26 pm Reply
    9. 9

      Roasted veggies look fabulous!

      Parita on Sep 22, 2009 @ 2:40 pm Reply
    10. 10

      Looks so good you can almost taste it! Great pics.

      Sally on Sep 22, 2009 @ 2:42 pm Reply
    11. 11

      Just made this last night. It turned out better than I had expected. I never cooked with fennel before but the flavors and textures combined created a wonderful side I will definitely make again. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

      Cho on Sep 22, 2009 @ 6:46 pm Reply
    12. 12

      That looks like a great way to enjoy some roasted vegetables! The basil dressing would add a nice freshness.

      Kevin on Sep 26, 2009 @ 8:18 pm Reply
    13. 13

      This looks really good…so colorful! I’ll be making this for dinner tomorrow night since I already have all the ingredients in the fridge. I’ve never had fennel before so this will be rather interesting. Can’t wait!

      AG on Oct 3, 2009 @ 12:14 am Reply
    14. 14

      Haven’t tried roasting vegetables before. Sounds good! And the colors come out very well.

      Reina on Nov 8, 2009 @ 10:28 am Reply

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