As a holiday that falls in early spring, Passover occurs just after the winter fruits have ended and before the summer fruit begins. Passover cuisine often melds the flavors of both seasons, including dried fruits, root vegetables, meats, fresh herbs, and edible flowers. I challenged myself to come up with a new recipe for Passover using only the ingredients that are growing at the farm right now.
When coming up with a recipe, I look to create a balance of flavor, color, and texture. I chose carrots as the main ingredient because they are versatile, hearty, and pair well with sweet marinades. In the farm pantry, I found Apricot Pepper Jelly and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, which I combined to make a sweet and spicy glaze for the carrots. To counteract the sweetness of the carrots, I whipped up a cream based dressing with fresh cooling herbs. For the last touch I sprinkled on some beautiful mustard flowers that give off a horseradish spice. The outcome was beautiful and delicious, and would be a perfect accompaniment to a holiday meal of roasted chicken and basmati rice (or roasted potatoes if you do not eat rice on Passover).
Apricot Cayenne Glazed Carrots w/ Creamy Herbed Dressing
2 tbsp sour cream
¾ cup of heavy whipping cream
1 tsp salt
½ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
2 tbsp of champagne vinegar
4 sprigs of dill, minced
4 sprigs of parsley, minced
4 sprigs of onion chives, minced
4 sprigs of garlic chives, minced
For the Carrots
Wash carrots. If you are using thick carrots (about one inch in diameter) quarter them lengthwise. If you are using thin carrots keep them whole or cut them in half lengthwise.
In a medium saucepan bring 3 quarts of water to a boil with two tablespoons of salt. Add carrots to the water and cook for two minutes. Remove carrots from boiling water and put them in an ice bath to prevent them from cooking any longer. Drain and dry carrots.
In a mixing bowl combine olive oil, apricot pepper jelly and salt. Add olive oil and pepper jelly to a medium sized sauté pan. Bring the temperature to a medium low heat until the oil has tiny bubbles.
Add carrots to sauté pan and cook at medium low heat. After about five minutes, add a splash of water to deglaze the pan. Rotate carrots in pan and continue to cook for about 15 minutes until the water evaporates. The carrots are done when they are slightly caramelized on each side.
Removed from sauté pan and plate.
In a mixing bowl , add sour cream salt and heavy whipping cream. Whisk for about five minutes and then add the herbs. The dressing should be thick but loose enough to drizzle over carrots. If the dressing becomes too thick you can loosen it with water. Add salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, drizzle dressing over carrots and garnish with mustard flowers.