This roasted eggplant recipe uses eggplants, which are from the nightshade family, which also includes potatoes, tomatoes and peppers. Nightshades have a special use in healthy vegan recipes, as they have the effect of releasing mental focus and concentration. This is helpful to those who have very stressful and focused jobs.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Time from start to eating: 50 minutes
Makes enough for 2 large servings.
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This transcription will have some mistakes because it is partially automated.
Hello and welcome to Freshly Served, the healthy vegan cooking show. I’m Heather and tonight we are making a balsamic roasted eggplant over some red rice.
Now I’ll start with the eggplant and get that ready to roast. Now I’ve got my eggplant chopped up along with some red onion and you can put whatever other vegetable you want in here or you can leave it with just eggplant but I had some mushrooms, I had three mushrooms that I wanted to use up so I’m gonna throw them in here as well.
Now I’ve cut them fairly large, think of this like vegetable shish kebab but we’re not gonna put a stick to it and instead of barbequing it, we’re gonna put it in the oven so I suppose it’s really not like a shish kebab but whatever, its close.
Now eggplant is a vegetable that I have only recently come to love. I had it once in a restaurant done in a pasta primavera and it was cooked so horrendously that it was just the most disgusting thing that I have ever eaten. So I figured ok, I don’t like eggplant but you know what I had it again since then cooked properly, delicious!
So, I’ve changed my mind on eggplant and I feel like if you think that you hate a food try it so often because maybe it was just that time of your life, maybe it was the way it was cooked. You never know.
Ok! So I’m putting these vegetables into a baking dish, I’m using kinda like a brownie dish and I just poured some olive oil on them so whenever your baking or roasting a vegetable what you wanna do is protect the vegetable first from drying out so we put some oil on them and eggplant will absorb a lot of oil so you might feel like there’s not a lot there but there is.
Mushroom also because I’m using mushrooms, they absorbed a lot of oil so anyway just get your hands right in there, get it all oiled up and then the second thing you wanna do is help the vegetables to wilt or soften or cooked.
So the way you do that is by adding some salt, I mean add the oil first because if you add the salt first then the liquid are gonna come out of the vegetable and they’re just gonna get all over the place and that’s no good.
But if we put the oil in first the water, you know the water and oil repel each other so if you put the oil in first when the water comes out of the vegetables it’s not gonna go any further than the oil that your putting around the outside. Neat huh?!
Alright! So sprinkle some salt on there, just a couple if pinches and then get your hands in there again, stir it all up and then you’re gonna pop it in the oven and you can put this anywhere from 350F to 400F degrees. You can do lower too, you can do 300F it just will change how long your vegetables need to cook for.
So at 350F they’re probably gonna need, somewhere half an hour. 400F less time, 300F more time, pretty cool huh?!
Anyway use your common sense. I’m using my toaster oven because it perfectly fits this baking dish, lucky that way. So pop those in there and then you get to make the rest of the dinner and what we’re gonna do is some rice so let’s get started on that.
So these is my red rice. I’m very excited this week to find them in the store. It is a type of brown rice that’s supposed to be colic because it’s still has the brand on the outside. It it’s just the brand is a reddish brown instead of a beige brown so if you can find this rice it has a really nice flavor and it’s always good to have different type of rice into your diet.
If you’re always eating the same type of grain, you’re always getting the same nutrients and that goes for different types of rices as well. Each different type of rice is gonna have a different nutrient profile so get some different colors, get short grain, get long grain, get some brown basmati rice if you can find it. Try some quinoa, try some millet, try any kind of grain you can find and rotate it into your diet.
I’m using red rice for this one just because it has a nice flavor, like a nutty kind of flavor that’s gonna go with the roasted vegetables. so to cook this, same with as regular rice.
I’ve got two cups of water on the stove with a bit of salt and I’ve got my one cup of rice. I’m gonna put this in the water, bring it to a boil and then turn it down, let it simmer for about 45 minutes. So this should take about the same amount of time as my roasted vegetables.
So here are my vegetables after about 20 minutes of cooking. You can see they’re getting a bit dry on top so all you got to do is flip them around. You’ll see that there are a lot of lovely juices coming out from the onion.
And it will just keep everything nice and moist but if you don’t flip it. It will just dry out on top and it doesn’t fully cooked. An eggplant especially you want it to cook. It will soften right up and it will be so delicious but if it dries out so disgusting.
My vegetables have now been in for 40 minutes and you can see they’re really nice and soft. The onions have really soften up, eggplants and mushrooms soft as well.
I always try to make sure when I’m using red onion though it gets soft because it has a very spicy onion flavor. So I’m gonna do now is pour some balsamic vinegar over here and be generous with that because it’s also going to drizzle over the rice and the greens that we’re gonna serve this with.
Now eggplant are part of the nightshade family which also includes potatoes, tomatoes and red, green, yellow, orange peppers. And aside from just nutrients they also help to unfocused and un-concentrate mental energy so if you are someone who has a really tense stressful focus job this might be helpful for you to have for dinner after a hard day at work.
When we roast them it somehow counters that effect because the heat that’s going into them centers the energy but they still, they still are good for that. So what I’m gonna do is pop this back in the oven for about 5 minutes while my rice finishes cooking and then we’ll be ready to serve it up.
So things are looking good here, vegetables are cooked, rice is cooked. I’ve got some greens in a dish. I was trying t find dandelion greens because they’re always nice to have in the winter but they didn’t have any today. They did have some mustard greens, those are gonna be really nice as well. Any type of winter green is gonna be a lovely, accompaniment to this dish.
We’ll take a look at this rice here. You can see the lovely red color is still going strong. It’s cooked perfectly. The grains you can see have just started to open. So what I’m gonna do is put some of these on top of the greens.
This is why you wanna use a winter green and not like a lettuce because the hot rice is gonna wlt these greens a little bit, lettuce is not gonna stand up very well to this.
Then we’ll take some vegetables, put them on top and then if you want you can put a little bit of extra balsamic on here, beautiful!
There you go! Pretty easy! And roasting the vegetables means that you don’t have to sit around and pay attention to them so excellent for a night where you just wanna hang out and relax and let the oven do the work.