Sunday, January 13, 2013

Glazed Carrots and Parsnips

The Saturday Market is active in winter but there are fewer vendors.  Also the produce does not change as much since it is things that store well or are grown in greenhouses or hoop houses.  So rather than the usual photographs and comments on new items coming into season I am going to do a few posts on the preparation of items from the Market and the nearby shops.

In this series I am going to present the reasons for doing something in addition to the process of preparing the item.  Hopefully this will be helpful to others in deciding to prepare Market items.  For the first in this series let's discuss the glazed carrots and parsnips that I prepared for our Christmas dinner.

I selected the carrots and parsnips because I wanted vegetables from the Market for a traditional family dinner.  I wanted a dish that my parents or grandparents might have served.  Carrots and parsnips store well, even in a simple root cellar.  The dish had to be prepared on the stove top since the oven would be in use, first for the roast beef and then for the Yorkshire pudding.  Here is a vegetable dish and a method of preparation that meets those conditions.

First steam the carrots and parsnips.  I steamed the carrots for only about 4 minutes and the parsnips for about 2 min.  I chose to possibly error on the undercooked side because I prefer veggies that are still a little hard to those cooked to mush.  The steaming step is not required but serves several purposes.   It allows refrigeration of the vegetables after peeling and cutting without concern they might change color.  I did it the day before so that there was one less thing to do on the day of the dinner. Also, since carrots take longer to cook than parsnips it allows the final step of glazing two vegetables simultaneously that have different cooking times.  

So how do you do the final glazing?  You need some butter or oil, some form of sugar and a bit of acid for a sweet/sour balance.  Here is the approximate ratios I used:
2 cups carrots, sliced into small sticks
2 cups parsnips sliced into small sticks
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons honey (from the Market)
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
Just heat the butter, honey and lemon juice in a pan until hot.  Add the steamed carrots and parsnips and cook over medium heat with stiring until the sugar in the honey begins to caramelize, about 10 minutes.  Note the color change in the pan and on the parsnips in the photo.

No comments:

Post a Comment