Bon Appétit (March 2010)
We try to be upbeat about the seasons -- we really do. We're constantly reminding ourselves that each new season brings its own unique pleasures, its own singular beauty.
But we've just gotta say it: We're so sick of winter!
It's nearly March, but outside it's just as dreary and cold as ever. True, it's been a particularly fierce winter in D.C. this year (snowiest year on record, etc.). But we just feel like we've been one long slog through the muck since November.
What we need is a vacation. Someplace warm, someplace sunny. Maybe get some sand between our toes. Someplace with spicy, exotic food...
Well, that ain't happening. But we'll settle for these carrots.
Carrots probably don't leap to mind when you think of "spicy" and "exotic." We ourselves never really think of carrots as anything special at all.
But this recipe for Roasted Baby Carrots with Chile, Mint and Orange Glaze transforms these humble little veggies into something really exciting.
The crushed red pepper especially kicks these carrots into high gear, giving them an intense heat that's really surprising and really delicious. Roasting the carrots brings out their sweetness, which is a great balance for the spice. The orange glaze and zest, along with the mint, round out all the flavors in a great way.
It's like your carrots took a vacation and came back a little more tan, a little wilder and lot more fun.
May we all be so lucky.
Roasted Baby Carrots, with Chile, Mint and Orange Glaze
(This photo: Bon Appétit)
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 bunches baby carrots (about 32), trimmed, peeled
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint
- 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel
Preheat oven to 375°F. Whisk juice, 1 tablespoon oil, and vinegar in small bowl to blend; set aside.
Stir remaining 1 tablespoon oil, crushed red pepper, and salt in medium bowl. Add carrots and toss to coat. Scrape carrot mixture onto large rimmed baking sheet. Arrange carrots in single layer.
Roast carrots until almost tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes (depending on size). Add juice mixture and toss to blend. Roast until juices are reduced to glaze and coat carrots, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes longer. Season to taste with more salt, if desired. Transfer carrots to large bowl; add mint and orange peel and toss to blend. Transfer to serving bowl.