While I can make a decent vinaigrette and a passable tahini dressing, I haven’t strayed far from the standards as far as gussy-ing up salads. This, it turns out, has been an error of omission. We eat some form of salad nearly every night, so branching out to new tastes was long overdue.
This dressing comes from one of my new favorite cookbooks, Thug Kitchen. And, as usual with the Thugs, it is simple, plant-based and is entertaining. It also is really quite tasty – who knew roasted carrots made such a great dressing?!
- 3 medium carrots
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- Pinch of salt
- 1/3 cup white wine vinegar (also suggested: rice wine vinegar)
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 TBSP orange juice
- 2 TBSP olive oil
- Heat up your oven to 357 degrees F. Chop up your carrots into chunks no bigger than 1/2 inch. Toss them together with the oil, cumin, and salt. Roast them in a small pan, covered until the carrots are tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
- Let the carrots cool for a minute then add them to a food processor with the rest of your $***. Blend it until it’s smooth. This could take as long as 3 minutes.
We visited a local market, Idylwilde Farms in Acton this week – one of my favorite places to go. It is a place where high-end food products and wines can be found right next to the most beautiful produce imaginable. Our challenge this week was to find locally grown produce and, despite the fact that we’re right smack in the middle of January, we were able to do just that.
The parsnips and carrots are both from Western Massachusetts. One of my favorite winter veg side-dishes is, roasted root vegetables. Roasting brings out the sweetness of both the carrot and parsnips making this one satisfying treat for a winter meal.
Roasting vegetables, especially root vegetables, is a fairly simple process: hot (400 F) oven, chunks of cleaned veggies coated with olive oil, some seasonings of choice, and about 20 minutes. Here’s the “master” recipe for tonight’s dish:
Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
- About 3 large parsnips, cleaned, quartered and chunked (2 inch long chunks)
- About 3 large carrots, cleaned, quartered and chunked (2 inch long chunks)
- Good quality olive oil to coat. Tonight I used half basil infused, half good old EVOO
- A couple of handfuls of herbs – tonight we used fresh rosemary, salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 F
- Clean and cut the parsnips and carrots. Place in a large bowl.
- Add the olive oil to coat generously.
- Toss in the herbs and salt and pepper. Mix well.
- Spread in a single layer in a large baking pan.
- Place in preheated oven and roast for 15-20 minutes. Test vegetables for doneness, remove from oven and serve.