Roasted Veggies with Chickpeas & Avocado Cashew Guacamole

We absolutely love roasted vegetables, especially at this time of year. We will often toss in chickpeas or another bean/legume to increase the protein and fibre content. This past week, we enjoyed roasted sweet potatoes, broccoli and chickpeas with a side of avocado cashew guacamole and our “Toasted Sesame Pumpkin Seed Topping from a previous newsletter. The meal was warming, nourishing, complete and delicious!

For the guacamole, I had soaked cashews for several hours. Of course you could simply make your own guacamole without the cashews, but I thought I would experiment with something different. We enjoyed this variation and appreciated the added nutrients….not sure though, that it’s worth the extra time!

Normally, sweet potatoes require a longer roasting time than broccoli. The sweet potatoes I had on hand were rather small and lent themselves to being cut in to the size of thick coins, and, as such, cut down on the roasting time.

Roasted Veggies with Chickpeas and Avocado Cashew Guacamole

4 sweet potatoes – cut into “thick coins”
2 stalks of broccoli – trim stalks – cut into discs and cut florets
1 14 oz can of chickpeas – rinsed and drained
2 cloves garlic – minced
Avocado oil or other heat-stable oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Avocado Cashew Guacamole
1/2 cup raw cashews – soaked in water 4 hours – then drained and rinsed
1 avocado – pitted
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1/4 cup avocado oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
*1/4 cup water* to thin mixture if desired

Combine sweet potatoes, broccoli and chickpeas in large bowl. Toss with oil, garlic, salt and pepper.
Place onto parchment-lined baking tray. Roast at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until sweet potato is tender when pierced.

While veggies are roasting, prepare guacamole by combing ingredients in food processor. Depending on desired consistency, you may wish to add water to thin the mixture.

Serve veggies with a side of guacamole and sprinkle with Toasted Sesame Seed Topping….see recipe below.

Toasted Sesame Pumpkin Seed Topping

1/2 cup white sesame seeds
1/2 cup black sesame seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup hemp seeds
2 teaspoons Himalayan salt

Lightly toast sesame seeds in iron skillet over medium heat. Keep stirring seeds and watch carefully because you don’t want to over-roast – those suckers can burn in an instant! I often lightly toast pumpkin seeds in my convection/toaster oven. Again, watch closely… soon as they’re fragrant they’re done – a minute longer and they are burnt!

Chop the pumpkin seeds. Combine all ingredients and store in glass container in fridge. Enjoy with any of your savoury dishes….my favourite is to simply sprinkle on an avocado – the perfect “fast food”!