Saturday, December 04, 2010

skillet carrots

Sweet Lord baby Jesus, you guys. I just ate about a pound of cooked carrots. Truly.

COOKED CARROTS? That sounds deplorable.

But I saw this recipe on Orangette's food blog, and seriously, that girl has never steered me wrong. And I love thyme. So I gave it a shot. Honestly, I think the French (and Orangette) are just genius.

I decided to use a mixture of carrots and parsnips (about 2:1) because the lonely parsnips at the market always make me so sad. Have you ever had one? It's sort of like a carrot, and sort of like a potato, and has that good, solid, earthy feel & taste that we gravitate toward in the foggy winter months. I love them.

I also used white balsamic vinegar because for some unholy reason my pantry is out of red wine vinegar (an injustice that will be remedied on my next trip out the door). It was fine-- the vinegar just sort of brightens the dish, not flavors it. But I think red wine vinegar would have been better. Oh, and while I was cooking, this happened:

So that took some time. And some sweeping. And I'm still crunching sea salt under my feet every time I walk into the kitchen. LE SIGH.

2 large carrots
1 large parsnip
1 white onion
4-5 sprigs fresh thyme
sea salt
olive oil
1 tsp red wine vinegar

Large flat-bottomed skillet with a lid

So you take a skillet, and heat up some olive oil. A little more than you think. Really coat the bottom of the pan. When it's hot, throw in 1/2 a white onion, cut stem to root (like this; as Orangette points out, it's very important to the integrity of the onion). Let the onions soften a while-- she says don't brown them but what is better than caramelized onions? so I just let them go to town while I sliced my carrots and parsnips.

Add the carrots, parsnips, thyme, and a generous pinch (or two) of sea salt. Toss to coat everything well and cover.

Let stew/sautee/steam for 15-20 minutes, stirring every few minutes. Test with a toothpick. They're ready when they reach your desired texture. I prefer them a little al dente myself, but it's totally up to you.

Sprinkle with vinegar, give a quick stir, and remove from heat. Serve immediately.

Note: this recipe should make 2-3 side servings, but I ate the entire thing by myself. Don't judge. At least I'm eating my vegetables.