This time of the year is always busy, busy, go, go; and I feel like I’m drowning in ‘stuff to do’; it’s so not what the season is about.
It’s easy to feel jaded, especially when events pile on and it feels like the world has come unmoored.
My reprieve is the quiet time I allow myself at dinner for reflection and contemplation, and even then I can’t seem to tune out the noise.
I crave the comfort of ordinary things, like the company of loved ones, views of fresh snow-capped mountains on a sunny day and the joy of sharing simple and mindfully prepared meals.
We’ve been roasting a lot of vegetables for our dinner, the dark wet days call for it – it’s a humble filling one-pot fare. I found the loveliest red cabbage at the market the other day, but it’s not really red, is it? It’s majestic purple.
I didn’t start out wanting purple vegetables only; it must have been my mood, because all I could see around me were potatoes, onions, tomatoes and peppers, all in deep purple-ly hues.
I grabbed the few purple vegetables that called out to me, and that is how this roasted purple vegetables with chickpeas and mint came about. I’ve made it a few times since then; the potatoes are tender, almost creamy, the onions and peppers are sweet and caramelized, and the tangy soft cabbage still has a bit of crunch. Along with the chickpeas and spices, the refreshing hints of mint create a truly delectable medley.
It smells delicious while it’s roasting, you’ll love your kitchen.
And when it comes time to eat, I pile my plate high and find the quietest spot, relax and try to eat as slowly as I can – savouring each bite, contemplating and being in the moment.
Roasted Purple Vegetables with Chickpeas and Mint
- 1/2 lb. purple potatoes (about 3 – 5 potatoes), cut into bite size chunks
- 1/2 head red cabbage, roughly chopped into big chunks
- 1 large red onion, cut into chunks
- 1 large red bell pepper, cut into chunks
- Sea salt
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons sumac (or 1 teaspoon lemon juice)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1/8 cup olive oil
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas
- A big handful of slow-roasted tomatoes, (or 2 – 3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint (plus more for garnish)
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F., and oil a large foil lined baking sheet
- Combine potatoes, cabbage, onions and peppers in a large bowl
- Sprinkle with salt and add garlic, sumac (or lemon juice), oregano and pepper flakes
- Add olive oil and toss together until evenly coated, check seasoning
- Place vegetables in a single layer on the baking sheet
- Roast for 20 – 25 minutes, turning vegetables hallway through to get it all crispy and golden and potatoes are cooked through
- About 5 minutes before potatoes are done, add the chickpeas and slow-roasted tomatoes and roast with the vegetables
- Remove from the oven, and mix in chopped mint
- Serve immediately with freshly ground pepper and garnished with mint