Easy recipe for roasted vegetables which get coated with a delicious, sticky, sweet and savory balsamic glaze. Substitute maple syrup for the honey to make it vegan.
This recipe for balsamic glazed roasted vegetables couldn’t be easier. All you have to do is chop some of your favorite vegetables, roast them in the oven until well caramelized and then coat them with a honey (or maple syrup) and balsamic sauce and continue baking until the sauce becomes a dark and sticky glaze. Just like this honey-balsamic glazed skillet chicken with dried fruits, the balsamic glaze gives a rich and multidimensional character to the dish, making it irresistible. You can also use this sauce for grilled vegetables. Just brush the vegetables with the sauce once or twice a few minutes before you remove them from the grill. Whatever cooking method you choose, this is a delicious, healthy, and low-calorie side dish you can customize by using your favorite seasonal vegetables.
What kind of vegetables can I roast?
As I said above, this recipe is totally customizable to your taste. During summer, great options are vegetables like zucchinis, eggplant, peppers, green beans, corn, and okra. During the winter, you can totally use carrots, parsnips, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, and broccoli. And if you happen to know someone who doesn’t like vegetables, my advise is to disguise them into a pasta sauce, like this healthy spaghetti with winter vegetables sauce.
Just remember that you may have to adjust cooking times depending on the vegetables but as a general rule, most of them will need 40-60 minutes in the oven.
Which balsamic vinegar is authentic?
Traditional balsamic vinegar is produced in small amounts and starts from grape juice which is concentrated by boiling and then fermented into a thick, sweet and savory vinegar. It usually takes 12 years and many transfers from larger barrels to smaller ones (because it gets more and more concentrated). The precise length of time that the vinegar stays in each barrel depends on the recipe of the particular family who produces it which is usually a well-kept secret.
Traditional balsamic vinegar is always labelled Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale and carries a D.O.P. (“Denominazione di Origine Protetta”) stamp. For more information you can read this article from Serious Eats.
Should you use authentic balsamic vinegar for this recipe?
Actually… no. Cooking an expensive balsamic would be a waste of money. Just make sure to pick a good quallity balsamic vinegar that contains wine vinegar and grape must as the main (and optimally the only) ingredients.
The size of the pan will affect cooking time
If you use a small, crowded pan the vegetables will take longer to cook and they won’t be well caramelized like they would in a larger pan where they’d be in a single layer. Also, the balsamic glaze will need more time to thicken and get sticky.
- 1 garlic clove cut in half
- 1 medium eggplant roughly chopped
- 3 medium zucchinis roughly chopped
- 1 red bell pepper roughly chopped
- 1 green bell pepper roughly chopped
- 2 carrots roughly chopped
- 1 pound (450 grams) baby potatoes cut in half (or regular potatoes, cubed
- 1 red onion sliced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup for vegans
Preheat your oven to 390°F (200°C).
Roast the vegetables: Rub a large pan or casserole dish with the garlic clove. Transfer the eggplant, the zucchinis, the carrots, the potatoes, and the onion to the pan (if you like the peppers very soft add them now, otherwise you'll add them after 30 minutes). Add the bay leaves, the cumin, the thyme, salt and pepper to taste, and the olive oil and mix well. Bake for 30 minutes. Add the peppers, stir well and bake for 15 minutes more.
Make the balsamic glaze: Mix the balsamic vinegar and the honey (or maple syruin a jar and shake well. Pour over the vegetables, mix well and continue baking for about 15 minutes or until thickened. Cooking time will depend on how much crowded your pan will be.
- If you prefer to grill the vegetables, the baby potatoes should be cut in half lengthwise and boiled for about 10 minutes or until fork tender. The rest of the vegetables should be sliced. Brush them twice with the balsamic sauce while grilling.
- Eggplant should be very fresh because the longer it stays on the shelf the more bitter it becomes Also, “male” eggplants tend to be less bitter than “female” ones. You can read more about it in this Creamy summer pasta with eggplant and tomatoes post.
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