Friday, September 30, 2011

Quinoa Pesto with Oven Roasted Tomatoes

This recipe came together when I was looking for something to make for dinner with ingredients that I already had on hand. It is a hybrid of a few different recipes that I found from across the web, and I can't remember the specific websites I was looking at (sorry about that!).  The only item I really had to buy was the pine nuts and it was a great way to use up the basil and tomatoes that I had from the garden outside.

This recipe really comes together with three different recipes - Vegan pesto sauce, quinoa, and oven roasted tomatoes.  Don't worry, it really isn't that complicated and it doesn't take that long to make!  Here is what you need:

Oven Roasted Tomatoes:
many cherry tomatoes, cut in half - enough to fill a 13x9" glass baking dish
big splash of olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar

You'll want to start the tomatoes first.  Cut all of the tomatoes in half and place cut-side up in a 13x9" glass baking dish.  Mix the olive oil and brown sugar together and pour over all of the tomatoes.  Make sure the tomatoes are completely coated in the oil/sugar mixture, and arrange them so they are all cut-side up on the baking sheet.  Place the tomatoes in a 350 degree oven, and bake for 45-60 minutes until they are all shrunken and roasted.

Vegan Pesto Recipe:
huge bunch of fresh basil (about 3 cups worth)
several cloves of garlic (I used 6-7, use less if you're not a garlic fanatic like me!)
6 tbsp raw pine nuts
1 tsp salt
6 tbsp olive oil
1/4-1/2 cup nutritional yeast (I used 1/4 cup, but you may want to use more)

Place all items, except oil and nutritional yeast in the food processor and blend.  Then, add the olive oil and nutritional yeast and combine until smooth and creamy.

Quinoa Recipe:

1 box of quinoa (or at least 1 cup uncooked quinoa)
extra virgin olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup corn, frozen
1 cup spinach, chopped
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup Vegan Pesto recipe
oven roasted tomatoes

Cook the quinoa.  Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil in a saucepan, 2-3 minutes.  Add the quinoa and corn, and cook for a few minutes.  Stir in the spinach and cook for a few moments, until the spinach begins to wilt slightly.  Remove from heat, and add the pumpkin seeds and pesto.  Stir through and serve.  Top with the oven roasted tomatoes.  Add salt to taste, if needed.

You'll have to time this one out properly - start cooking the tomatoes first, and while they are in the oven, prepare the pesto and then the quinoa.  Once the tomatoes are almost finished, prepare the final quinoa recipe.

This one is super tasty and I've also made other variations of the recipe since making this!  I'll be posting that soon as well!  Very healthy, wholesome, and a great way to use up some items that you may have hanging around the kitchen or the garden!

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