The secret ingredient? Kombucha!
When I head to the market, especially these days, I try to have a list or at least a pretty good idea of what meals I am shopping for, a plan! However, sometimes we find something beautiful and need a little course correction.
I was looking for some fresh broccoli, and I spotted some beautiful baby carrots, tops and all. They looked really inviting. I also found some lovely deep-red blood oranges and an idea began to form. Since I love both these ingredients roasted, and I love orange with carrots, they seemed perfect sidekicks for a side dish.
Don’t you love a secret ingredient?
The special ingredient in the dish ended up being a ginger kombucha that I love. It was sitting in the refrigerator asking me to use it with the others and I thought it might add a little zing, and I knew I probably would not get enough juice from the last orange to create the sauce I envisioned.
This is an easy dish to make, one sauce that comes together quickly and is used as both the roasting marinade and the finish sauce. The kombucha, a fermented tea, definitely adds a lovely flavor, but even if you don’t care for the beverage straight up, this doesn’t scream KOMBUCHA, but adds a subtle little something. The ginger adds a lot of flavor to the dish, and the kombucha I used had a ginger flavor as well.
If you can’t find the young carrot or the blood oranges, you can use whatever carrots or oranges you have. You can also substitute honey or agave for the maple syrup, and flat leafed parsley for the carrot tops.
The carrots come out beautifully roasted, with crispy little bits. The roasted orange slices are delicious, a little sweet and a little bitter. We liked this so much, we’re making it for Easter dinner!
Roasted Carrots with Blood Oranges
- 1 lb. carrots, with tops if possible
- 3 blood oranges, divided
- 2/3 cup kombucha (ginger)
- 1-inch knob fresh ginger, grated
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- Carrot tops or fresh flat-leafed parsley
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 450. Line a baking sheet with parchment or brush with oil.
Scrub the carrots and pat dry. No need to peel them. Cut off the greens and reserve. If the carrots are new and small, leave them whole. If they are big and fat, cut them lengthwise into halves or quarters.
Scrub two of the oranges and slice thinly, about six slices per orange. Zest the third orange and set the zest aside in a small bowl along with the kombucha. Juice the orange and add to the bowl. You will want about 1/3 cup of juice for a total of 1 cup liquid.
Grate the ginger, crush the garlic, and add them along with the maple syrup and olive oil to the orange zest. Mix everything together well and place half, about a half cup, in a small saucepan.
Place the rest of the sauce in a large bowl and add the carrots and orange slices. Coat them well and place on the baking sheet. Add any left-over sauce to the pan with the rest of it.
Roast for 20 minutes, turn, and roast another 20 minutes. They may be done, or they may need a few more minutes.
While the carrots and oranges are cooking, bring the sauce to a boil and simmer until reduced to half and thickened.
When ready to plate, finely mince some of the carrot tops and add about a tablespoon to the thickened sauce.
Plate the carrots and oranges and drizzle with the sauce. Garnish with a sprinkling of carrot tops. You can leave all the oranges whole, or slice some of the up into smaller bits. I like it both ways.
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