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Roasted Eggplant and Zucchini Wholemeal Spaghetti with Pesto

What you need: 

Vegetables:
1 large (skinny, 11" long) zucchini, 1/2" cubes or strips
1 large eggplant, 1/2" cubes
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
5 ounces wholemeal spaghetti
2 cloves garlic, minced
4-5 large mushrooms, sliced (I used white button)
5-6 cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2-1 tablespoon vegan margarine/butter
large sprinkle nutmeg
black pepper and sea salt, to taste Pesto:
1/8 cup sunflower seeds
sea salt, to taste
2 large bunches fresh basil (2 1/2 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
splash fresh lemon juice
2-3 cloves garlic

What you do: 

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Dress zucchini and eggplant in 1 tablespoon olive oil and a dash sea salt in a roasting pan. Place in the oven on the top shelf and let them roast for 35-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is dark and soft, and the zucchini has lost most of its crunch.
2. Meanwhile, for pesto, heat up a heavy bottomed pan and toast the sunflower seeds (dry frying, no oil) until they are golden, about 2 minutes; watch them carefully and don't let them burn! (These also make a quick and delicious snack.) Sprinkle the toasted seeds with salt.
3. Place sunflower seeds and remaining pesto ingredients in a food processor; whizz and then pulse until the desired smooth texture is achieved. Taste it before finishing it, and adjust the lemon juice/salt/garlic, to taste. For a looser pesto, keep dribbling in oil, lemon juice, or even just a splash water until desired thickness is acquired. Set aside.
4. After eggplant and zucchini has been roasting for about 20-25 minutes, bring a large pot of salted water to boil and add spaghetti; cook following the package instructions, about 15 minutes. In a frying pan, fry the garlic, mushrooms, and tomatoes in 1 teaspoon olive oil until soft and juicy.
5. Drain pasta, reserving a bit of pasta water, and return pasta to the pan. Toss pasta in vegan margarine and a generous sprinkling nutmeg, salt, and pepper, and toss in the pesto. Add mushrooms, tomatoes, their cooking juices, and roasted vegetables. Add pasta water, as needed. Reheat until nice and hot, and serve!
I hope you enjoy this, I find it an easy and elegant dinner; very tasty!
Source of recipe: I wrote this recipe.

Preparation Time: 
30 minutes, Cooking time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 
15 minutes
Servings: 
3-4
Recipe Category: 

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