Roasted Carrots, Spanish Spices, Yogurt Sauce, Harissa

January 9, 2016
Dinner, Fall, Vegetables, Mediterranean, Thanksgiving, Healthy

These carrots are a favorite at Gato--and now you can make them at home!

Serves: 4 to 6 as a side dish

½ cup Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon harrisa
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound baby carrots, tops removed but with a little green left attached (real baby carrots, not the large carrots that have been whittled down)*
Canola oil or pure olive oil
2 teaspoons Spanish paprika
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground mustard
¼ teaspoon ground fennel
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
Parsley leaves, for garnish
Thyme sprigs, for garnish
Crispy parsnips, for garnish, optional **

1. Whisk together the yogurt, harrisa, thyme and zest in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Cover and let flavors meld while you prepare the carrots.

2. Bring a pot of well-salted water to a boil. Set up a bowl of well-salted ice water. Blanch the carrots in the boiling water until slightly al dente (still have crunch), plunge them immediately into the ice water for 2 minutes then drain well. Use a clean tea towel to rub the skin off the carrots. Set aside.

3. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat until the oil shimmers. Add the carrots and spices and sugar and cook until charred, season with salt and pepper. Transfer the carrots to a casual and top with dollops of the yogurt sauce.

*If you can't find small carrots, use regular ones cut in half lenghtwise

**To make crispy parsnips – heat 2 cups of canola oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it reaches 350 degrees on a deep fry thermometer. Peel the parsnips and thinly slice on a mandolin. Fry, in batches, until lightly golden brown and crisp, about 30 seconds. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels, season immediately with salt.