I’ve discussed with many of my friends and family (and probably you, too, to be honest) my absolute love and undying devotion to veggies. I know that sounds so ridiculous and cheesy and over dramatic and… yea, you’re right. But in all honesty, if you place veggies on one side of me and fruit on the other, I will always dive for the veggies. I just adore the crunch factor, and the sweet burst of flavor and earthiness they add to a dish.
Seeing as how my heart longs for the crisp bite that veggies have to offer a dish, it’s only natural that I try to incorporate them into as many things as possible. Fresh veggies are great, but to really kick my recipes up, I love to toss them with olive oil and throw them in the oven for a good roasting.
In this recipe, we combine the hearty flavors of roasted broccoli, bell peppers and onions, with the fresh pop of cherry tomatoes and the “zing” (get the name of the recipe now??) of fresh lemon and basil. Oh, and pasta. Because we can’t say no to pasta.
For this dish, we only roast the broccoli, onions and bell peppers. I can hear some of you say “but what about the cherry tomatoes? You mentioned them, too! Those are DELICIOUS roasted!” Those of you saying that would be right. Cherry tomatoes are so so SO good roasted. The tomato caramelizes perfectly in the oven for an even more sweet bite. In order to keep this recipe feeling fresh and less robust, I opted to leave the tomatoes out of the roasting party. Those babies are just so sweet and crisp on their own, I didn’t want to detract from the lightness of the dish. You can definitely add them to the pan and roast away, if you so choose. I can’t tell you what to do! 🙂
Tossing the lemon zest and juice with some parmesan cheese, olive oil, garlic and salt and pep give you the perfect way to dress up the warm pasta and veggies. Of course, don’t forget the fresh basil!
- -2 medium heads of broccoli, washed and cut
- -1/2 red onion, sliced
- -1 orange bell pepper, sliced
- – 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- – salt and pepper to taste
- -1 lb penne pasta
- – 1 pint grape tomatoes
- – 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil ribbons
- For Zing Dressing
- – zest and juice of 1 lemon
- -2 Tablespoons olive oil
- – pinch of salt
- – 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- -1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- -1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line sheet pan with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, toss broccoli, red onion and bell pepper with 1 Tablespoon of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Spread onto parchment paper, and put in the oven. Roast veggies for about 15 minutes.
- Cook penne pasta according to instructions on packaging.
- While veggies roast and pasta boils, cut the tomatoes in half width-wise. This opens all the pockets inside the tomato, allowing more of the sweetness to be tasted. Mix together all ingredients for Zing Dressing (It will look lumpy; this is normal).
- When pasta is done, strain and rinse. Remove veggies from oven, and toss with pasta, tomatoes, Zing Dressing, and fresh basil ribbons.
- Best served warm and fresh. If you’re making this to eat at a later time, do not mix until you are ready to serve.