You can add chicken to any of these dishes if you are feeling more carnivorous.
Afghan Vegetables with Apples and Honey
2 large heads of broccoli
1 cup snow peas or sugar snap peas
3 teaspoons curry powder (more to taste)
2 cloves garlic
2 medium apples
½ cup raisins (I sometimes throw in prunes and/or dried apricots)
½ cup white wine
¼ cup olive oil
½ cup vegetable broth
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Soak raisins in wine while prepping the rest (about 15 minutes). Dice onion, mince garlic, chop the other vegetables into bite-sized pieces. Grate the apples coarsely.
Mix olive oil, broth, honey, salt and pepper, add to white wine/raisin mix. Place all other ingredients in a casserole dish, top with wine/raisin mix. Bake covered at 350 for one hour. Serve with rice, couscous, or pasta so you can soak up the extra juice.
Mediterranean Vegetables with Dried Apricots
2/3 cups red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons fresh oregano
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2/3 cups olive oil
12 ounces dried apricots, or mix with raisins and prunes
2 cans artichoke hearts (plain, not marinated), drained
1 large head broccoli
½ cup pitted olives (I mix green and calamata)
2 tablespoons capers
1 bay leaf
3 tablespoons brown sugar
¾ cup white wine
Combine all ingredients except brown sugar and wine and place in casserole dish. Splash wine on top, sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake covered at 350 for one hour. Serve with rice, couscous, or pasta so you can soak up the extra juice.
Avocado Pesto with Broccoli and Pasta
1⁄2 teaspoon table salt, plus more for cooking broccoli and pasta
2 or 3 large heads of broccoli, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 pound whole wheat rotini or other pasta
1 ripe avocado, halved and pitted
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1⁄2 cup shelled pistachios or pine nuts, toasted, chopped, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest plus 1 tablespoon juice
1⁄4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Boil 4 quarts water and 2 teaspoons salt in large pot. Add broccoli and cook 3 minutes or until tender. Remove broccoli with slotted spoon and transfer to colander set over bowl. DO NOT throw out the boiling water; you need it for the pasta. Let broccoli drain and cool slightly, about 5 minutes.
Add pasta to the water used to cook the broccoli, return water to boil, and cook according to package instructions. You want it al dente. Scoop out 1 cup of the cooking water and set it aside, then you can drain the pasta and return it to the pot.
To make the pesto, use an immersion blender or food processor to mash up 1 cup broccoli, 1⁄2 cup pasta cooking water, avocado, basil, half the nuts, the garlic, lemon zest and juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; make a paste. With the blender running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
Add the pesto and broccoli to the pasta in the pot and mix. Add more of the reserved cooking water if needed. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with remaining nuts and drizzle with extra oil. Serve garnished with fresh basil.