During the last few CSA pickups, we’ve been getting carrots. But, because carrots are good keepers, we’ve generally eaten all the other produce first, then, just like clockwork, we end up with more produce that includes carrots and the cycle starts anew. So, after three weeks, we had a big bag of carrots and we knew we needed to make a concerted effort to munch them down.
We find the easiest way to do that is to find a new recipe — although, to be completely honest, we really discussed the possibility of carrot cake a lot — so we simply made one up, creating this 100% scratchin’ original recipe. Since we were having these carrots for lunch, we wanted easy, but tasty, and not just the same old steamed carrots, possibly with peas.
Even though we use naturally-grown carrots, we do peel them. It makes them look nicer. The peels, of course, go into the stock that we make once a week. For the wine, we use Barefoot Pinot Grigio, mainly because we like it, plus it’s an inexpensive wine. You can leave it out when making this, but, realize that the alcohol in wine releases flavors in the carrots that aren’t water soluble. Finally, if you don’t have 100% pure maple syrup, we suggest replacing the syrup with brown sugar. It’ll still be good, and it won’t taste like chemicals.
Procedure in detail:
Melt butter. Place the butter in a large skillet over medium heat, swirling the pan to coat, until the butter melts and is foamy.
Cook carrots and raisins. Once melted, add the carrots and raisins, shaking the pan to create an even layer. Sprinkle with the salt. You’ll think that it’s a bit too much salt, but we think that’s because the grains of kosher salt are larger than table salt. The salt is important for two reasons: first, it draws out moisture, concentrating the carrot flavor, and, second, salt acts as a flavor enhancer, making the carrots taste better. Cover the skillet and cook until the carrots are mostly tender, about 7 to 10 minutes. Once or twice during this time, give the carrots a stir.
Add wine and vinegar. Add the wine and vinegar, give everything a stir, and place the cover back on the pan. Continue to cook, stirring once or twice, until most the liquid is absorbed, 5 to 7 minutes.
Add maple syrup. Pour in the maple syrup, stir to coat, and cook uncovered until the carrots are glazed and the syrup is reduced and thickened.
Serve. Serve immediately with a dusting of chervil or parsley, if desired. It’s mainly there for a contrasting color.
These are no harder to make than cooking up carrots, and yet they taste a lot better than plain carrots. While the maple syrup and raisins add a nice sweetness, it’s tempered by the tartness of the wine and vinegar. We liked our carrots cooked this way so much that we had it two days in a row, which really cut into our excess of carrots. Five stars.