Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Colorful Carrots

One of my go-to side dishes when I'm pressed for time, I have been making this very simple and lovely carrot dish for years.  A delicious and nutritious family favorite, many a hand has been slapped while reaching in to grab a carrot before dinner is served.

I start with about 6 medium sized carrots, which I clean and trim.  If the carrots are organic, I don't peel them, and if they are not, I do.  I love using these colorful "high pigment" carrot varieties for that wow factor, but more often than not I end up using basic orange carrots, and the result is still very eye-catching.

Next, I slice the carrots into uniform sized sticks, as shown.  (I just love the deep purple ones with the cream colored interior!)

After that, I boil the carrots in salted water until they are just fork tender.  For me, this half raw, half cooked preparation represents a satisfactory trade-off, as the longer the carrots cook, the sweeter they will taste, but their nutrition value will also be compromised.

In the meantime I prepare my toppings.  They include a large clove of minced garlic, one fresh purple or green onion sliced very thin (including some of the green stems), a handful of Italian flat leaf parsley chopped well, 2 tablespoons of very good extra virgin olive oil, and the juice from half a lemon.

When the carrots are perfectly tender, I drain them and immediately plunk them into a bath of ice water to arrest the cooking.

Then I line the carrots up in a serving dish, toss in the olive oil and lemon, garlic, onion, and parsley, sprinkle in some Kosher salt and plenty of fresh ground black pepper, and serve.

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