I adore roasted vegetables. Something about the sticky sweetness of the red onions mixed with the burst of steam from cherry tomatoes, delicious herbs and mellow aubergine really appeals to me. They are so versatile too; I often use them as a side dish for grilled pesto salmon or mixed up with some spicy couscous – they even work with a Sunday roast! The great thing about roasted vegetables is that they taste great hot or cold so are often a go-to portable lunch in our household. Oh yeah, did I mention that they are really healthy too, an easy helping of your 5-a-day and packed full of anti-oxidants?! Bet you can’t wait for my recipe now….have I sold it to you?!
The winning combination I usually opt for is sweet potato, aubergine, red onions, courgette, peppers and cherry tomatoes. Of course butternut squash can be substituted for the sweet potatoes and various colours of peppers work well but I personally prefer red, yellow or orange – the sweeter the better!
One of my absolute favourite dishes using roasted vegetables is my ‘Roasted Vegetable Frittata with Balsamic Leaves and Feta’ for a healthy light lunch or starter. Although this may seem like a very simple dish, the flavour combinations are a winner and it can easily be dressed up to impress for a party.
A few notes and tips regarding frittatas:
- Frittatas are basically the Italian version of an omelette.
- Frittatas differ to omelettes as their ingredients are mixed with egg rather than folded into the middle of the cooked egg mixture
- Filling and seasoning can make or break a frittata
- A good quality, non-stick frying pan is essential for the success of this dish.
- A combination of cooking on the hob and in a hot oven promise to ensure that this dish is cooked through
- Don’t rush a frittata; the best results are seen with patient, slow cooking.
Memoirs of an Amateur Cook’s Roasted Vegetable Frittata with Balsamic Leaves and Feta
(Serves 8 as a starter or 4 as a more substantial lunch)
2 small red peppers
3 small red onions
Half an aubergine
400g sweet potatoes
150g cherry tomatoes
Large handful of basil
Tbsp balsamic vinegar
Large handful mixed leaves
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees.
2. Dice the courgette, peppers, aubergine and sweet potatoes into 1cm cubes remembering to peel the sweet potato and de-seeding the peppers.
3. Remove the skin of the red onions and cut into 8ths.
4. Spray a roasting tray with fry light. Put the prepared vegetables in the tray along with the cherry tomatoes. Season and scatter over the basil, tearing it with your hands.
5. Roast the vegetables for 45 minutes, checking half way through and turning. Once the vegetables are done, remove from the oven and turn the oven up to 220 degrees.
6. Spray a large frying pan with frylight and heat. Whilst the pan is heating, beat 6 eggs in a measuring jug and season.
7. Pour the roasted vegetables into the pan and shake to distribute them evenly then pour in the beaten eggs and tilt the pan so that the eggs coat all the ingredients.
8. Cook gently for 5 minutes before transferring to the oven for 15 minutes.
9. To serve, cut into 8 wedges, toss the lettuce in balsamic and place on top of the frittata, scattering over the feta.
N.B – This recipe can be dairy free if you omit the feta.
I adore this lunch and it is so good for you too! The saltiness of feta and the acidity of the balsamic leaves really contrast with the sweet sticky vegetables to provide a great all-round flavour. This dish is so quick to create, it really is a crowd pleaser – I hope you enjoy it too!