Have you ever seen food as naturally orange as these carrot fries? I DID hit the “enhance” button, but I swear they were really orange in person, too.
Carrots often get overlooked as a veggie. Not overlooked, really, but put in a box. They are the healthy “dipper” to replace chips, and part of the “mirepoix” (chopped carrots, celery and onions) that starts most soups and casseroles. The thing is, carrots can be a star side dish! Now I’ve always loved raw carrots but hated them cooked and I know a lot of people who agree with me. Cooked carrots = gross. I think the problem is the way they were being cooked – I loved them roasted!
This recipe comes from America’s Test Kitchen (the big time cooking nerds). What they do is try a recipe like, a zillion times until they get the perfect result. With these carrots, they roasted them first covered tightly with foil. This essentially steamed the carrots so that they would cook through completely. You finish the roasting process with the foil off so they can get crispy on the outside. Crispy exterior with a creamy center – and sweet to boot. The prep is so simple, and I’d be willing to bet you have a bag of carrots in your fridge right now.
You could use fresh herbs like rosemary and thyme for your own twist, or just keep it real with salt and pepper. Either way, anyone can make this side dish and I don’t think you’ll be sorry. I ate mine dunked in ketchup. Don’t judge.
Simply Roasted Carrot Fries
Slightly Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen
1 lb. carrots (carrots are usually sold in a 1 lb. bag), peeled,halved crosswise, and cut lengthwise if necessary to create even pieces*
1-2 tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 tsp. salt or more to taste
1/4 tsp. pepper
*Cut them like french fries
1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, combine carrots and butter until well coated. Add salt and pepper and toss to coat.
3. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and coat with nonstick spray.
4. Spread fries in an even layer.
5. Cover baking sheet tightly with foil and cook in preheated oven for 15 minutes.
6. Remove foil and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until carrots are well browned and tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
7. Check for seasoning, adding more salt or pepper to taste. Serve.