CARROT RECIPES: Carrot Salad with Cumin . . . Butter-Maple Glazed Carrots . . . Chorizo-Lentil-Carrot Soup
By: Herald Wire Reports,
Carrot Salad with Cumin
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into thin slices or strips (see note)
1 clove garlic, smashed
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt to taste
Cook the carrots and garlic in boiling salted water for 5 to 8 minutes, until tender. Drain.
Whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, cumin, paprika and cayenne in a serving bowl. While carrots are still hot, add to dressing and stir to coat well. Season to taste with salt. Serve at room temperature.
Note: You also can use grated carrots and skip parboiling them. Refrigerate them with the other ingredients for a couple of hours.
Butter-Maple Glazed Carrots
1½ pounds carrots, peeled and cut in ½-inch thick rounds
1/3 cup water
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, preferably Grade B
1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Place carrots in a heavy skillet with the water, butter, syrup and brown sugar. Bring all ingredients to boil.
Reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer until carrots are crisp-tender, about 8 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until the juices are reduced to a glaze, about 5 minutes. As the cooking liquid reduces, stir the carrots frequently to make sure all the pieces are coated with the glaze. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
FOR THE SOUP:
2 large (about 13 ounces) cooked chorizo sausages, sliced (optional)
1 to 1½ cups French green lentils, picked over and rinsed (see note)
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-ounce no salt added cans diced tomatoes with their juice
8 small red waxy potatoes, scrubbed, quartered and soaked in 3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon cumin seed, lightly crushed
½ teaspoon ground coriander
3 cups chopped greens, such as kale or Swiss chard (tough stems discarded)
FOR THE GARNISHES:
Good-quality olive oil
Grated hard cheese
If using the chorizo, brown the slices in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Set aside.
Place lentils in a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot. (Use 1 cup lentils if adding chorizo, or 1½ cups lentils for a vegan soup.) Add water to cover by about 2 inches. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Cook lentils until tender, at least 30 minutes. (If necessary, add water while cooking.) Drain, then transfer lentils to a bowl and set aside.
Return the pot to the stove over medium-high heat. Add olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add onion and carrots and saute, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add diced tomatoes with its juice and potatoes with its soaking water.
Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce heat. Add chorizo slices, if using. Let simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are just tender, about 12 minutes.
Stir together salt, freshly ground black pepper, paprika, cumin seed and coriander in a small bowl. Set aside.
Once the potatoes are cooked, stir in the lentils and chopped greens. Add spice mixture to taste. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, just until greens are cooked. Add more spices as necessary.
Divide the soup among bowls and serve it with desired garnishes: a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of parsley or shavings of hard cheese all work well.
Before cooking with any lentils, pick them over carefully and discard small rocks and shriveled lentils.
Note: Don’t substitute brown or red lentils because they don’t hold their shape as well after cooking.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6.