Honey and Cumin Braised Carrots


04 Mar Honey and Cumin Braised Carrots

Me: How much broccoli should I cook?

Andrew: How much Cheez Whiz do we have?

Me: How long to you want to remain married?

Andrew:  […]

Okay, moving onto safer territory — carrots.

I got the idea for these after dining in a restaurant when the accompanying vegetables outshone the forgettable duck confit. While the poultry disappointed, I was so impressed with the sweet yet savory carrots I had to recreate them at home. I usually find cooked carrots a source of frustration. Plain are boring but when I jazz them up with ginger, certain extended family members complain they’re too spicy.

But these? They should make everyone happy — even without Cheez Whiz.

Do you find cooked carrots boring? If so, how do you spice them up?

Honey and Cumin Braised Carrots

Serves 4 as a side

  • 2 cups carrots
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Wash and slice the carrots. Peel if you must, but I didn’t.
  2. In a skillet over medium-high heat, melt honey. Add the water and cumin and bring to a boil.
  3. Add carrots and toss to coat well.
  4. Put the lid on the skillet, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 3 minutes. Carrots should be tender-crisp. Note: Timing will vary with the size of carrots you use.
  5. Remove lid, turn up heat and boil briefly to reduce the liquid.
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste.

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  • Lisa MacColl
    Posted at 10:23h, 04 March Reply

    *hanging head in shame* I have to agree with Andrew on broccoli, although I would make a real cheese sauce. (Cheez Whiz was a staple in my house growing up-my dad liked it on fresh asparagus. I know, I know…) My kid loves “trees”. I don’t share her enthusiasm but will eat it because it’s…gulp…good for me.

    Carrots. If they are fresh from the garden, just a little butter. If they are the miniature, pre-peeled things, boiled and then tossed in a little honey and dill. It’s a trick I learned from friends who used to own the Castle On King Restaurant in Kitchener. I can’t peel carrots or oranges unless I want to end up with contact dermatitis all over my hands so I buy them in the bag, prepeeled, pre-washed and skip oranges all together.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:28h, 04 March Reply

      @Lisa MacColl, love the honey and dill idea.

      And good for you for eating “trees” to set a good example for your daughter!

  • Dana McCauley
    Posted at 11:12h, 04 March Reply

    love the sound of this recipe – very delish combo!

    I’m seriously concerned about this Cheez Whiz issue, tho. Does he like real cheese sauce? You gotta break him of this affection.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:30h, 04 March Reply

      @Dana McCauley, Andrew does actually like good cheese. He just has a soft spot for junk sauces — and excuses to tease me.

  • Carrie
    Posted at 14:16h, 04 March Reply

    These carrots look wonderful, they may be an addition to a vegan meal I’m prepping on Saturday.
    As for the Cheez Whiz issue, you’re not alone. My husband sometimes breaks out the sriracha sauce without even tasting his food first. Although he does so at his own peril 😉

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:32h, 04 March Reply

      @Carrie, I’ve never made this with maple syrup, but you might want to try that instead of honey since vegans don’t eat any animal product — and honey comes from bees.

      Wonder what would happen if we locked our husbands in a room together? I shudder to think!

  • The Diva on a Diet
    Posted at 15:21h, 04 March Reply

    You had me at carrots and you reeled me in with the cumin. I just love this combination! I’d be making these post haste … but *my* husband detests carrots. Its one of only two foods he simply doesn’t like. (Peas being the other.) Will save this one for when I’m dining with others. They look delicious, Charmian!

    Oh, and for the record, broccoli + cheez wiz = yummy … but carrots + cheez wiz = weird! 😉
    .-= The Diva on a Diet´s last blog ..Thirsty Thursdays: Blushing Margarita Edition =-.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:50h, 09 March Reply

      @The Diva on a Diet, I used to hate cooked carrots, too, so I understand where your husband is coming from. I now like them, but need them jazzed up a bit.

  • Robin Smart
    Posted at 21:58h, 04 March Reply

    This extended family member sincerely thanks you for coming up with a new idea for carrots that doesn’t call for ginger. I actually made paprika baked cauliflower tonight, and it was a really nice change. Change is good. Why not bring them to the next pot luck?
    Ginger phobic sister

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:51h, 09 March Reply

      @Robin Smart, nice to see you venturing into roasted cauliflower. I LOVE it!

      I can bring these to the next get together, but you have to bring the cauliflower!

  • Cheryl Arkison
    Posted at 13:44h, 05 March Reply

    We are carrot fans in this house. My biggest problem is that I never make enough if we roast them. We all love them this way.

    If steamed, I like to do a quick glaze with balsamic vinegar and honey.
    .-= Cheryl Arkison´s last blog ..Atrophy =-.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:52h, 09 March Reply

      @Cheryl Arkison, balsamic vinegar and honey? Sounds fantastic.

      And I can understand why you can’t make enough of the roasted carrots. Roasting is just soooo good.

  • Cheryl@5secondrule
    Posted at 14:03h, 05 March Reply

    My son Alex loves cooked carrots in any form, which cracks me up because I *hated* them as a kid. In fact, my husband ordered salmon at a restaurant earlier this week and they came with a huge side of roasted carrots. We took the rest home and I packed them up in Alex’s lunchbox today. No Lunchables for my kid!

    I do love carrots in all form. My neighbor Elaine roasts hers whole with a ton of garlic and they’re always delicious.
    .-= Cheryl@5secondrule´s last blog ..Tips =-.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:53h, 09 March Reply

      @Cheryl@5secondrule, almost any vegetable roasted in garlic is amazing.

      Love that your kids is a veggie fan. Good on you for putting the roasted carrots in his lunch. And good on the restaurant for being so generous with their carrots. I got about 8 tiny slices and could have gobbled so much more.

  • Mark
    Posted at 01:21h, 06 March Reply

    What a delicious idea! I think I’ll try it soon.

    Plain carrots are boring, in my opinion, unless they’re cooked to a puree, but they only need a little bit of anything. I like grating a bunch of carrots in the food processor, because unless they’re boiled to death, I like the grated consistency better than chopped. I love stir-frying them with ginger and maybe a touch of hot pepper, usually with some cumin or mustard seeds sizzled in the oil first and with a little lemon or lime added after, but I also like a salad of raw grated carrots with grated apple and any appropriate-seeming acid: apple cider vinegar, wine vinegar, lemon juice. Sometimes I also add grated orange rind or gingerbread spices such as cinnamon and cloves. (That’s actually what I’ve got in the fridge right now: grated carrots, stir-fried until just warm through in a little oil in which cinnamon sticks were sizzled in, mixed with a sprinkle of black pepper and nutmeg and chopped orange rind and grated apples and apple cider vinegar.) Sometimes I’ll also mix in chopped parsley or mint, or sprinkle toasted sesame seeds or chopped walnuts over the top.

    If I’m boiling carrots to death and then pureeing them, they pair well with just about any spice. Cumin. Star anise. Nutmeg.

    In any case, your suggestion sounds like fun, and I’ll definitely try it soon.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:56h, 09 March Reply

      @Mark, Wow! Mark, these are amazing suggestions. Love the addition of lemon or lime. I’d try all of these suggestions in a heart beat. Thanks so much for taking the time to share these with us!

      The chopped walnut version really appeals to me!

  • Sophie
    Posted at 08:53h, 07 March Reply

    A lovely carrot dish!! Yummie & apart too!
    .-= Sophie´s last blog ..Delia’s jerusalem artichokes & carrot soup =-.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:57h, 09 March Reply

      @Sophie, glad you like the carrot idea. I see you recently posted about an unusual carrot soup. Great minds think alike!

  • Judith Rutty Godfrey
    Posted at 17:57h, 08 March Reply

    In these cold months I often toss carrots with a little horseradish mixed into a bit of mayo, diced onion, and dijon. I sometimes parboil the carrots, toss with the mixture, add some bread crumb topping and bake. But if I’m lazy, I simply throw in the ingredients, sans bread crumbs and—serve! They seem to put a little zing in an otherwise uneventful meal. But my hubby and I adore cumin so I’ll be trying this recipe soon.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:58h, 09 March Reply

      @Judith Rutty Godfrey, thanks so much for taking the time to share your carrot secrets. It’s wonderful to see you here on the blog!

      Love the idea of parboiling and then baking with a crumb top. Mom used to do that with broccoli and I loved it, so why not use carrots?

  • carolyn
    Posted at 19:19h, 08 March Reply

    i make something very similar and switch up the spices depending on the menu. they’re very good prepared with crushed coriander and fennel seeds. love that first photo!

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 14:59h, 09 March Reply

      @carolyn, thanks for pointing out that you can switch the spices to suit the menu. Good call. The idea of crushed coriander and fennel is intriguing. I can see that being a great side dish for Indian or Middle Eastern dinners.

  • Mango
    Posted at 18:29h, 11 February Reply

    I make this same recipe but I use orange juice instead of water. Delicious.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 19:19h, 11 February Reply

      Brilliant idea! Thanks for sharing your variation. Think I’ll try that the next time!

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