This time of the year is always busy, busy, go, go; and I feel like Iâ€™m drowning in â€˜stuff to doâ€™; itâ€™s so not what the season is about.
Itâ€™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 canâ€™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.
Weâ€™ve been roasting a lot of vegetables for our dinner, the dark wet days call for it â€“ itâ€™s a humble filling one-pot fare. I found the loveliest red cabbage at the market the other day, but itâ€™s not really red, is it? Itâ€™s majestic purple.
I didnâ€™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. Iâ€™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 itâ€™s roasting, youâ€™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 â€“ savouring each bite, contemplating and being in the moment.
Roasted Purple Vegetables with Chickpeas and Mint
- 1/2 lb. purple potatoes (about 3 â€“ 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 â€“ 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