Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Carrots Vichy

This is a very simple but very good side dish that is well received on holidays. Start by scraping and de-ending five or six medium size carrots. Then cross-cut them into very thin (1/16th inch) medallions (smaller than pictured). This should make about two or more cups of carrot slices. Next melt about ½ of a stick of butter in a large sauce pan. Into this melted butter finely grate one small onion or two large shallots. Sauté this until translucent. Next add about two tablespoons of flour and cook until a light brown roux is formed.

Then add the carrots, a good pinch of sugar, and enough water to cover. Stir well. Cook the carrots until fork-tender and most of the water is evaporated. You should have the consistency of a thin gravy. Add salt and pepper to taste. Then add about three grates of a fresh nutmeg. Stir well and finish with a few sprigs of chopped-up Italian parsley and serve immediately. Serves six to eight people.  Goes well with roast turkey, roast beef or baked ham.

For a variation on this recipe, you could substitute an equal amount of tiny baby carrots (even those fru-fru ones with part of the tender stems still attached). And, if you want the silky restaurant-like sheen on these carrots, use a smaller amount of arrowroot instead of the flour ... and don't cook the roux quite so long. (Believe it or not, you can even use powdered kudzu root instead of the arrowroot.)

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