Thursday, January 3, 2013

Lemon Honey Roasted Carrots

I hated cooked carrots as a kid. Unlike essentially every other child I knew, I had a mindset that sweet vegetables held absolutely no place on the dinner table. Instead, you'd find me gladly chowing down on the bitter lettuces, cruciferous plants and asparagus stalks, the spicy radishes and hot peppers, or the sour-salty pickled cucumbers and giardiniera.

As I grew up, though, the caramelly taste of roasted veggies grew on me more and more. The bittersweet notes from the bits that are just slightly overdone helps temper the sugar in the beet, carrot, sweet potato or squash, and I'll admit that I'm one of those people who likes their fries (and really most carb-like things) well done - blame my dad, who likes burnt cookies more than perfectly golden ones! Now I not only roast the root veg and tubers, but I love asparagus, green beans, brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower done this way too.

These carrots came from my garden's overabundant (if there is such a thing) yield this year. We ate as many as we could au naturale - I mean really, you couldn't ask for cheaper organic heirloom veggies! - but finally they were even outstaying their welcome in the fridge. To get them into a perfect dinner side-dish format, I called upon the flavours of something my mom used to whip up for dinner during the week (boiled carrots with honey and lemon), but jazzed them up with herbs, spices and garlic before roasting them to tender perfection. While they're certainly simple enough for dinner, these are fancy and delicious enough for company too! 

Lemon Honey Roasted Carrots

Sent to Wellness Weekends and Gluten Free Friday

Lemon Honey Roasted Carrots
Makes 6 side dish servings
1 lb slender, fresh carrots (use the most slender carrots you can find)
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup dark honey (vegans, use amber agave)
1/4 cup gluten free vegetable broth
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (for company / special occasions, use Meyer lemons)
1 tsp lemon zest
3 cloves garlic, cracked but left whole
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp onion powder
2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp fennel seed
pinch sea salt

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Halve the carrots lengthwise, and if they're very long cut in half across. Place in the bottom of a casserole dish.
  3. In a bowl whisk together the remaining ingredients.
  4. Pour over the carrots and stir to evenly coat.
  5. Cover and roast for 15 minutes.
  6. Stir, then uncover and roast a further 15 minutes. 
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 85.6
Total Fat: 0.9 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 91.7 mg
Total Carbs: 20.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.2 g
Protein: 0.9 g