Saturday, July 10, 2010

Roasted Vegetable and Bean Salad

Life felt crazy last month - two major events at work, preparing for the move from the Upper East Side to Fort Greene, Brooklyn and simply dealing with summer's heat in the 4th story walk-up and life's random surprises. With so much going on, I had to step away from eating at home, from putting my eating into words and just focus on getting things done and trying to decrease my clutter. Besides I didn't have internet at home for 3 weeks of the month (that was SO hard...I'm an addict!).

I have plenty more to go through (years of magazine clippings to organize for example) but it felt really good to get rid of so much prior to being here where I have one roommate, not two, my room has bright SUNLIGHT rather than dim light from an air shaft and I am not haunted by squawking pigeons daily. I walk up a mere flight of stairs to my place. My commute is longer but that just means I can read more while in transit and I'm beside most of the train lines. There even is a suburb-size grocery store 3 blocks away.

Life is good, home feels more peaceful and I'm excited to settle into this new adventure. Since I'm just starting to stretch out and greet summer and the new changes I kept it simple when I prepared my first meal here without my parents, who generously helped me move.

This simple roasted vegetable and bean salad was satisfying, savory and aromatic. I really loved the bright bursts of tomato juice and the velvety roasted garlic with the roasted vegetables' richness. This meal requires very little attention and time, which never hurts, and reheats well.

Roasted Vegetable and Bean Salad
2 servings as a main course*

1/4 lb. Green Beans
1/2 Pint Cherry Tomatoes
1 Broccoli Crown
5 Garlic Cloves
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cover a baking sheet with foil, if you want easy clean-up.

Rinse the green beans, broccoli crown and cherry tomatoes. If desired, swirl them all in a salad spinner to remove excess water. Snap the ends off of the green beans, cut the broccoli into smaller sections and add all the veggies to a medium bowl. Add the 5 garlic cloves and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss the mixture with your hands or tongs.

Wrap the garlic in foil and then put it and everything else on the baking sheet in the oven for 25-40 minutes. When your green beans are shriveling and the broccoli is browning on the edges the veggies are done. If desired, flip the veggies and turn the pan around midway for even roasting.

While the veggies cook open the can of beans and rinse them in a colander. Put them in the medium bowl from prepping the veggies.

Once the veggies are done roasting remove them from the oven, opening the foil packet of garlic, and let them cool briefly. When you can handle the garlic remove its skin. Add the green beans, broccoli, tomatoes and garlic to the beans and toss everything together. If desired add salt and pepper to taste. Then enjoy!

*You could make this go further by adding a grain, like Quinoa which I was too lazy to make, or eating it with bread.

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