Friday, November 26, 2010

Maple Pan-Roasted Baby Carrots

The Carrot Top Bouquet

We picked up these crazy ass carrots last week at the North Union Farmers Market at Shaker Square. As far as carrots go, we have a tendency to float around to some of the different vendors. While there are specific people we go to for specific things, produce for the most part seems to be a bit of a moving target.

I don't remember the name of the farm, but he's the guy that also sells bison meat along with a variety of vegetables. Even this deep into November I've seen some stuff that is The Chef's Garden quality, which I find to be pretty remarkable. At any rate, I saw these carrots and knew they'd make for some interesting pictures.

The Cut

The outside is a deep purple just like a beet, but the color only goes toward the middle of the carrot about an 1/8th of an inch - the rest is orange. I don' t know the name of carrot variety but I'll find out when I talk to the guy this weekend. As one might expect, they were a fairly sweet carrot that browned up quite noticeably when roasted.

While this recipe calls for baby carrots, these were a little too big. Rolling and cutting them ensured they would cook all the way through. Visually I think they were much more appealing cut than left whole. I didn't realize it until after I made the recipe that this was written by Dan Barber of Blue Hill. He's certainly one who tries not to let his cooking get in the way of good product.

A printable version of this recipe can be found here at the Fine Cooking site.

The Finished Product
(I photographed these things a bunch of different ways and they looked black every time.)

Maple Pan-Roasted Baby Carrots
by Dan Barber

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb. carrots with their tops on, preferably baby carrots, peeled and stems trimmed to about 1/2 inch

1 Tbs. pure maple syrup

1/2 tsp. kosher or sea salt; more as needed

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper; more as needed
Tip: To cut a large carrot into 6 baby-carrot-size pieces, slice the carrot in half crosswise; then halve the narrower bottom end and quarter the wider stem end.

1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F.

2. In a large (12-inch) ovenproof skillet or sauté pan, heat the oil over high heat (the oil shouldn’t smoke but should crackle when you add the carrots). Add the carrots and cook, stirring frequently, until they blister and turn golden brown in spots, 1 to 2 minutes.

2. Add the maple syrup, salt, and pepper and toss well to coat the carrots. Remove from the heat.
Spread the carrots evenly in the skillet and transfer it to the hot oven.

3. Roast until the carrots are tender, browned in spots, and just a little shriveled, 12 to 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving.


  1. Ohio Honey also works magic with baked, freshly harvested carrots. Yours look yummy.

  2. My mother used to boil the damned things when I was a kid. For me, boiled carrots and beets are the only foods that will actuate a gag reflex. On a scale of 1 to 10, my mother was a solid 1.8 as a cook. She was, without a doubt, a casualty of the '50's, '60's and '70's agribusiness marketing campaign. The whole foods she DID buy were absolutely devoid of flavor. If only she had known about kosher salt, ground pepper, butter, and maple syrup.