Moroccan Spice-Infused Rainbow Carrots with a Sweet-Tart Sauce

Written by Eydie Desser

These beautiful rainbow carrots from the Farmers’ Market were calling my name and were begging to be made into a Moroccan-spiced side dish. But how was I going to cook them and then “dress” them with a traditional Moroccan Vinaigrette without oil? “Necessity is the mother of Invention.” Instead of boiling the carrots in just water, I came up with the idea to season the water with the Moroccan spices to flavor the carrots from the inside out. Voila! — the carrots loved bathing in this flavorful “broth”. They are delicious on their own or perfect to use with a hummus dip (but cook them al dente). I wanted to serve these beauties as a side dish, so I made a quick and easy sweet-tart sauce that goes beautifully with the Moroccan-spiced carrots.

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch rainbow carrots (about 6 oz.)
  • 1 tsp. Ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. Ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. Smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 guajillo chili (about 3” long), lightly toasted in a dry pan, and seeded
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 TB pistachios, lightly toasted in a dry pan
  • Micro-green leaves, or baby swiss chard leaves or other tiny lettuces


For the Sweet-Tart Sauce:

  • 3 TB Maple Syrup
  • 1-1/2 TB Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Fresh orange juice (just a few drops to taste)

Instructions

1- Clean carrots and remove tops.

2- In a 3-quart saucepan, add water till ¾ full, and add spices the spices:  cumin, cinnamon, sweet paprika, guajillo pepper, and garlic. Bring mixture to a boil and stir. Taste the water to see if it needs more of the spices. It should taste flavorful.

3- Add the carrots to the boiling water and lower the temperature to medium-high.

4- Cook the carrots until soft when pierced with a knife.  Depending on the thickness of the carrot this will take 5 or more minutes. The carrots should be soft enough to cut with a fork but not too soft that they will fall apart. Just a tiny “give” when pierced with a knife and they are perfectly cooked.

5- Using tongs, carefully remove the carrots to a plate.

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