Carrots are currently my signature contribution to Easter lunch. Not because I’m an expert at cooking carrots mind you, but because I found a recipe that includes a sauce everyone loves. To be honest, these Easter carrots are really all about the sauce — it’s called chermoula, and it’s so good.
The original recipe is from The Chalkboard Mag: Carrots 4 Ways According to Botanica
“Chermoula is an herbacious green sauce with African roots (Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria) and a weird and wild flavor profile.“
Scroll down to the second recipe in the article. It’s called Roasted Carrots with Hazelnuts and Chermoula. Because it’s part of a series of recipes, I’ve reprinted the original here. (If you keep scrolling, you’ll find a good non-dairy carrot top pesto recipe.)
I make the sauce exactly as written and leave out the jalapeño seeds. The carrots, however, I do a little differently. It looks very gourmet to roast and serve whole carrots, but I’ve never done that. I cut mine into medallions and roast them at 425 for 10 – 15 minutes. Also, we have a tree nut allergy in the family, so I’ve never added the hazelnuts. I follow the recipe for everything else.
* Note: I think the sauce should have been a bit more drizzly than it was in my photo. But that’s just about looks, it tastes the same whether it drizzles or not.
Easter Carrots Recipe
(aka, Roasted Carrots with Hazelnuts and Chermoula, from The Chalkboard Mag)
For the carrots:
2 bunches carrots (multi-colored, if available), tops removed except for a few inches of stem
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
¼ cup olive oil
⅓ cup toasted hazelnuts
zest and juice of 1 lemon
sea salt and black pepper
For the chermoula:
1 garlic clove, smashed
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp chopped ginger
2 Tbsp whole lemon
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 jalapeño (remove seeds to keep it mild; keep ‘em in for extra spice!)
¼ cup water
¼ tsp sweet paprika (sub smoked if that’s what you have)
¼ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp ground coriander
1 packed cup chopped cilantro (leaves and stems)
1 packed cup chopped parsley (leaves and stems)
½ cup olive oil
pinch of sea salt
Preheat your oven to 425°F, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and add the carrots.
In a small bowl, mix the coriander, cumin and olive oil. Pour the mixture over the carrots and toss well with your hands, making sure the carrots are well-coated. (Even oil distribution is the secret to uniformly caramelized vegetables! Use those hands. That’s why soap was invented!) Sprinkle liberally with salt.
Roast the carrots until they’re browned and you can pierce them with a fork, about 35 minutes.
While the carrots rest, make the chermoula by tossing everything in your blender and blending on high until the mixture is silky. Thin a bit with olive oil or water if need be (it should be thicker than a vinaigrette yet easy to drizzle). The sauce will keep in your refrigerator for about 5 days, but bear in mind it’ll brown a bit as time goes by.
Arrange the carrots on a shallow serving tray, sprinkle with hazelnuts, and spoon chermoula generously over the top. Season with the lemon juice, zest, sea salt and pepper.