Orzo with Roasted Vegetables

I absolutely love this recipe by Ina Garten, but I find it a bit too oily as written. This version has reduced oil and simplified directions. The original recipe and video can be found here.


1 small eggplant, peeled and 3/4-inch diced
1 red bell pepper, 1-inch diced
1 yellow bell pepper, 1-inch diced
1 red onion, peeled and 1-inch diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound orzo or rice-shaped pasta
4 scallions, minced (white and green parts)
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/2 pound feta, 1/2-inch diced (not crumbled)
15 fresh basil leaves, cut into julienne

3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black peppe


Preheat the oven to 425-F.

Cut the eggplant lengthwise into long slices. Lightly brush or spray with olive oil. Proceed to cut into cubes and set aside.

In a large bowl toss the bell peppers, onion, and garlic with 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt and pepper. Add the Eggplant and toss. The reason I initially separate the eggplant from the rest of the vegetables is because it will soak up every bit of oil and prevent the other vegetables from getting coated.

Pour all the vegetables back onto the sheet pan. Two sheet pans may be necessary to prevent the vegetables from being over crowded.

Roast for 40 minutes, until browned, turning once with a spatula.

Meanwhile, cook the orzo according to the package.

For the dressing, whisk together lemon juice, 3 tablespoons olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Drain and transfer the orzo to a large serving bowl. Toss with the dressing.
Add the roasted vegetables and toss. Let cool to room temperature, then add the scallions, pine nuts, feta, and basil.