Saturday, March 23, 2013

Roasted Leeks & Carrots

Here's another extremely easy, flavorful and family-pleasing vegetable side dish that will have even notorious veggie-haters requesting seconds. Leeks have a mellower flavor than onions, and roasting caramelizes their natural sugars while canceling out any pungent notes. Likewise, roasting carrots brings them an earthy, deep sweetness that's virtually irresistible -- and that's coming from someone who normally loathes cooked carrots!

Roasted leeks and carrots are an excellent side dish to serve with steak, pork chops, London broil, roasts of all sorts (beef, chicken or pork) and other hearty, richly flavored main courses. For additional nutritional benefits, serve over a bed of sauteed spinach as shown below, and finish with a squeeze or two of fresh lemon juice.

I did not list specific quantities because this recipe is completely flexible. Generally I plan on 1 leek per 2 servings, and for every leek I use two carrots. So, if you need more than two servings, simply multiply the recipe below accordingly.

Ingredients (for 2 servings - multiply as needed)
1 large leek
2 large carrots
Olive oil
Sea Salt & freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 375°F. Wash the leek thoroughly under running water. Trim the root bottom and about 1" off top and remove any tough or discolored outer leaves. Slice diagonally into pieces about 1" thick -- you may want to rinse each piece again to remove any remaining interior grit. Peel & trip the carrot, then slice into 1/2" thick diagonal pieces. Place the leek and carrot pieces in a bowl or large resealable plastic bag, drizzle with a little olive oil, season with salt & pepper to taste, then toss (or seal the plastic bag and shake) to coat all the pieces well. Spread leek & carrot pieces in a single layer in a shallow roasting pan or on a baking sheet and roast at 375°F until tender and light golden-brown, about 30 to 40 minutes (depending on how tender or browned you want them). Transfer to serving dish, taste for balance and season with more salt & pepper if desired.

Zestfully yours,
Carolina Sauce Company

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