Honey, Lemon and Thyme Glazed Carrots
Roasted carrots are almost as simple as it gets when it comes to a side for Thanksgiving. Nothing to do but wash, peel and throw them in the bottom of the roasting pan when the turkey is almost done, delicious. But if you take an extra few minutes, you can bring a totally different roasted carrot to the table, that’s almost just as easy and classic. Plus, you can buy those fancy carrots with the tops so that everyone feels special knowing you went the extra mile.
Honey, lemon and thyme are just about a perfect combination of sweet, sour and savory and are a great way to liven up the regular old honey glazed carrots. People tend to either boil and then glaze or glaze and roast, but I think a combination of the two is really the best way to go. Blanching and then roasting gives you the best of both worlds, with the tenderness of boiling and the flavors from roasting, plus you can do the blanch up to a few days prior to make life easier come game day. These carrots may only be a small side, but remember greatness is in the details.
1 Bunch of Carrots
2 Tbs Butter (use more olive oil for vegan)
2 Tbs Honey (Agave nectar for vegan. Thanks to Poppy for reminding me about this.)
1 Tbs Olive Oil
Zest from 1 Lemon
8-10 Sprigs of Thyme
Salt & Pepper
First off, this is a small amount of carrots to feast on. This recipe probably only makes enough for 2-3 people, but easily doubles and triples.
So hopefully you spent the extra money and bought the carrots with the tops. Now the first thing to do is cut those tops off… no, really. The greens are edible, but technically so are kale stems and lemon pith. Cut the greens leaving about 1/4″ – 1/2” left at the top, after all we still want people to know we made the extra effort.
Peel the carrots right into the greens, trying to get some of the ring off where the greens and root meet.
Get some salted water boiling and in batches, blanch the carrots for 60 – 90 seconds. If you have increased the recipe volume and dumped a lot of carrots in all at once, it would reduce the temperature of the water too much and you will overcook the carrots by the time the water boils again. Once the carrots are done, place them in a colander under cold running water to stop the cooking process.
Preheat the oven to 450º.
Make the glaze by combining the honey, lemon zest, butter and oil in a pot and cooking over medium heat until it is syrupy. The oil will help the butter from burning. Take the carrots and dry them with a clean towel. Place them in a bowl, toss with the glaze and season with salt and pepper. Place the carrots on a sheet tray and lay the thyme over them.
Roast for 20 – 25 minutes. Discard the thyme. Place the carrots in a serving dish and cover with foil until ready to serve.