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A while ago, I used a gift card from my Grandma to get Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables. Running a vegetable garden business in the backyard, I figured it would be nice to have a few more ideas on how to cook up all the veggies. I've really enjoyed the recipes I've tried so far. This one might be my favorite yet.
With the recipes I've tried, I notice Joshua McFadden likes to use simple ingredients that come together in surprising, tasty ways. He also lets the veggies shine, highlighting their particular flavor. In fact, he encourages his readers first to eat veggies raw and only to start cooking them once you've gotten bored with that. (If you haven't realized yet, fresh vegetables make a huge difference in his recipes.)
Enter this recipe, where the method is fairly straightforward and unfussy, yet the flavor is spectacular and out of the ordinary, thanks primarily to the vinegar. Using local, raw honey also raises the flavor oomph. It's a dish easy enough to make on a weekday, but special enough to serve at a festive gathering. Win win!
Carrots with Honey, Black Pepper, Butter, & Almonds
Nothing beats garden fresh carrots. Like most things straight from the ground, they have a sharp, distinct smell, even raw. They are so full of flavor! Plus, you don't usually need to peel them they are so tender.
1 1/2 pounds carrots, trimmed and peeled (if garden fresh, leave the skins on) but left whole
2 tbs white/red wine vinegar
Sea salt & freshly ground pepper
2 tbs butter, cut into small pieces
2 tbs honey
1/2 cup almonds, toasted and chopped
Preheat oven to 475F.
Spread carrots onto a baking sheet and drizzle with oil. Roll & toss carrots to coat. Place into heated oven and cook for 10-15min, or until the carrots get toasty or even a bit charred, but not completely tender. (My carrots didn't near charred in my oven -- if the same happens to you, I suggest placing them under the broiler for a few minutes to achieve it.) Remove carrots from oven. Lower oven to 300F.
When carrots are cool enough to handle, slice at a sharp angle into 1/2 inch slices. Place into a large bowl with the vinegar, salt (start with 1/4 tsp, but I used 1/2tsp), and a few grinds of pepper. Toss to coat, then let sit for 5 minutes to let the carrots absorb the vinegar.
Once rested, spread carrots back onto the baking sheet. Dot with the butter and drizzle the honey on top. Transfer to the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes more.
Scrape everything into a serving dish and taste. Adjust seasoning with more salt, pepper, or vinegar if necessary. Sprinkle with almonds, then serve. Enjoy!
Adapted from Six Seasons.