Vanilla Cumin Roasted Carrots

November 5, 2009


Photo: My Recipes

Vanilla and cumin—sound strange? I must admit that I would not have paired these flavors had I been more planned. But, as most of you know, there’s no opportunity for planning with a newborn. You get a window of time and, not sure how long it will last, you jump right into whatever it is you hope to accomplish.

The other night, with a pork loin into the oven, I needed to come up with a vegetable side pronto. The oven was already hot, so roasting was the obvious choice and perfect for the carrots I had on hand. I snapped into autopilot and sprinkled the carrots with olive oil, salt and cumin. Earthy cumin and sweet carrots are a go-to combo in my house. But, as much as I love them together, I always find cumin a teeny bit sharp. As I hurriedly coated the carrots, I got to wondering: would enhancing the sweetness of the carrots better balance the sharpness of the cumin? With no time to plan (or even measure), I added some honey and vanilla. And, with that, I found the answer to my question: a resounding YES!

I already mentioned that I didn’t have time to measure, right? (That may happen more than usual in the coming weeks!) But this is a forgiving recipe. There’s no need to get uptight about amounts. You just want to make sure to coat the carrots well before putting them in the oven, and then again 1/2 way through cooking.

These carrots were a hit with Isaac who, like me, appreciated the extra sweetness. They can easily be mashed to share with even the youngest eaters.

Vanilla Cumin Roasted Carrots
(can be adapted for kids 6+ mos)

1 bunch of organic carrots, washed and trimmed
organic olive oil
organic honey*
organic vanilla extract
organic cumin

1. Preheat oven to 375. Place carrots on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, honey and vanilla (just a small drizzle of the latter). Sprinkle with cumin and salt. (If cooking for young eaters, skip salt in this step. Instead, separately salt older kid and adult portions before serving.) Toss to coat thoroughly. Bake for about 30-35 min until carrots begin to turn brown in spots and are soft throughout.

*Note: Substitute agave syrup for honey if feeding to a child under 12 mos

3 Responses

  1. Dipti says:

    These sound delicious! And, the picture just makes my mouth water! Any advice as to where I could find the cute mini carrots you have pictured? I have checked our local Whole Foods and they didn’t have them. I’ve always wanted to get these kinds of carrots b/c they really present well!

  2. stacie says:

    Around here, there are specialty markets that often sell the mini carrots you’re talking about. But you can achieve the same look with smaller “regular” carrots. I buy organic carrots that still have their green tops (as opposed to the bags of carrots which come with the tops chopped off)–the are often smaller. Chop the green stems off, leaving a little still attached (about a 1/2 inch). Then wash and use a peeler to trim the little bit of stem into a neat top. (By the way, I don’t peel the rest of the carrot–just wash thoroughly.) Hope this is clear and works out!!

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