Roasted Vegetable Strudel

So this week, I’ve been determined to get into the Christmas spirit. The 70 degree weather makes it incredibly difficult. I want gloves and scarves and pea coats people! I shouldn’t have to crank the AC down to convince myself it’s cool enough for a hot chocolate, right?

Last weekend, we got our tree. Which is beautiful. It’s also giant – so halfway through putting up lights, we had to run out and buy more. This was after spending the afternoon balancing on a ladder hanging giant ornaments and outdoor lights, so we postponed the actual decorating of the tree until the next night…because I wanted to be able to enjoy decorating, which comes complete with an ornament draft and a viewing of Love Actually.

Ornaments Tree

Now, we’re entering the portion of the month full of holiday parties. I think they are fun on the weekends – but let me tell you, during the week – they can just be exhausting! As in, I get home and don’t want to move. Or cook.

Luckily, I have a great recipe that’s pretty easy to prepare. It’s filling, but not as rich as that cheese ball or creamy dip your co-workers make – and it’s the perfect way to load up on your veggies this holiday season. Don’t be intimidated by the point value – it’s great as a big dinner, or you can divvy it up for snacks!

Roasted Vegetable Strudel (serves 2 / 14 WW points per serving)

Ingredients

1 medium eggplant, chopped

1 medium zucchini, chopped

1 red bell pepper, sliced

1 small red onion, sliced

1/2 package frozen artichoke hearts

1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic

2 tsp. olive oil

“I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” spray

10 tsp. reduced-fat Parmesan cheese, grated

1 cup shredded fat-free mozzarella cheese

2 oz. Goat cheese crumbles

10 sheets Phyllo Pastry Sheets

Salt and pepper

2 tsp. Italian herb seasoning

1/2 cup marinara sauce for dipping

Preheat oven to 425. In a deep baking pan, toss vegetables with olive oil, garlic and a few dashes of salt and cracked black pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes.

Seasoned veggies

While your vegetables are roasting, it’s time to play with Phyllo! Get a sheet of wax paper or aluminum foil and spray with a little non-stick spray (the sheets tend to stick the longer they sit!).

You will need 5 sheets of phyllo for each strudel. Lay your first one down and spray with butter and sprinkle with grated Parmesan. Repeat with each layer. When you get to the final layer, add crumbled goat cheese and shredded mozzarella about 2/3 of the way down the sheet, leaving a 1 inch border on the sides and end.

Phyllo layer Cheeses

When your vegetables are cooked through, add to the top of the cheese. Also reduce oven temperature to 400. (You will probably have some leftover vegetables – they are great for a leftover lunch served with a little crunchy bread!)

Roasted Veggies

Starting from the end with the cheese and vegetables, begin to roll your strudel. This is where you will be glad you used a little non-stick spray! Place strudel seam side down on a lightly greased baking sheet. Spray tops with a little more butter, sprinkle with additional Parmesan and add some Italian herb seasoning. Bake for 15-20 minutes until pastry is lightly browned.

Rolled Baked

Slice and serve with marinara sauce for dipping.

inside

Seriously, why can’t all vegetables look this delicious?

Close Up Bite

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Roasted Parmesan Asparagus

Growing up, I hated mushy vegetables. Scratch that – I still hate mushy vegetables. Probably why I have never been a fan of lima beans. Sorry Mom!

But seriously, to this day I don’t like cooked carrots which (much to my dismay) are very popular in the South. You can call them cute names like “Copper Pennies” all you want, but I will still only put one or two on my plate (to be polite, of course), chew them as few times as possible, and chase them with something more appealing. Like wine.

Soups are the only reason for vegetables to be somewhat mushy. And obviously, I’ll grant a pardon to potatoes because, well, they’re potatoes and I enjoy them in all forms.

Now, asparagus to me always used to have that gross texture. You know, when you bit into it and it’s all slimy and stringy? Ick people.

However, I now love asparagus. Because I found a way to make it absolutely delectable and non-mushy – and from me to you dear friend, this might be the easiest recipe I ever share with you. So no excuses – it’s healthy and it’s delicious. Make it!
Roasted Parmesan Asparagus (serves 4 – 2 WW points per serving)

1 bunch asparagus

2 tsp. olive oil (I just use my Misto to spray it on)

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

4 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400.

Snip off ends of asparagus (you can usually tell where to trim – it’s lighter in color).

Coat a baking sheet with non-stick spray and arrange asparagus in a side-by-side line.

Brush/spray with olive oil to lightly coat. Then sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake for 15 minutes. Then remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan. Return to oven for an additional 2-3 minutes until cheese has melted.

This goes great with anything – it’s amazing with fish or some delicious steaks – so divide, serve and devour!