James Holmes

Broiled Squash & Mushrooms with Basil Pesto Pasta [VAAB]

Filed By James Holmes | July 24, 2012 2:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: Broiled Mushrooms, Broiled Squash, VAAB, Vegan, Vegan Ain't All Bad, Vegan Cooking, Vegan Recipes

Broiled-Pesto-Veggies.jpgThis week for my CSA share we received a huge amount of basil - so that means only one thing - time to make pesto!

Pesto traditionally contains parmesan cheese. To veganize, all you need to do is leave it out, and I swear you will not miss it.

I also received my first eggplant for the season and a mixture of yellow and green summer squash, both of which go great with pesto and pasta. Fresh tomatoes also made their first appearance for the year. Combine that all together, and I've got myself dinner for a few days.

I've made this recipe for a few summers now, and with the hot weather, I hate heating up the oven. Broiling is much faster and does not heat up the house as much.

If you do not have a broiler, veggies can be roasted in a 450 degree oven for about 30mins, or grilled. Squash and mushrooms cook off a lot of water, so grilling or broiling really work best. If you are grilling, you may want to cut the squash a bit thicker.

You will only need about a 1/4 cup of the pesto for this recipe, depending on how strong you want the flavor. Pesto freezes amazingly well, and I usually make large batches while in season so I have enough to last me all winter.

I always use whole wheat pasta, and in this case, bow-ties or rotini. You want a heavier pasta for this dish. Whole wheat has a higher protein content, so for a vegan, that is always a plus.

Remember to check the label. Most dried pastas are vegan, but some contain eggs.

Check out the recipes after the jump. Let me know how it turns out for you, or if you made any alterations. Enjoy.

Basil Pesto

  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups fresh basil, de-stemmed
  • 5 or 6 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 1 cup walnuts or pine nuts (I used walnuts)
  • 1/4 cup or more olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Toast walnuts in a dry pan over medium low heat until they start to smell toasty, stirring constantly to prevent burning - let cool. Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender, and blend until smooth. You may need to adjust the amount of olive oil.

Broiled Squash & Mushrooms

  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1" x 1/2" rectangles
  • 2 medium summer squash (I used zucchini & yellow) sliced into 1/4" thick medallions
  • 1-2 cups sliced white or baby bella mushrooms
  • 2 small or one large fresh tomato, diced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Place the cut eggplant into a bowl along with a heavy pour of salt, cover with water and let set at least 15mins. Drain and rise thoroughly. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except tomatoes and toss to coat. Set your broiler to high. Arrange veggies flat on a boiler pan and place under the broiler for 10 mins, checking after 5 mins. You want everything to just start to caramelize. Do not over crowd the pan, so you may need to do this in batches. I did the squash first and the mushrooms after.

Prepare 16 oz of dried pasta according to the manufacture's instruction.

Drain pasta and return to pan or a large bowl. Add in 1/4 cup pesto and toss to coat. Toss in the squash and mushrooms, or serve directly on top. Garnish with tomatoes.


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