Roasted Matchstick Carrots with Mint-Walnut Pesto

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I am just now realizing that this is the second post in a row about carrots and no, I am not sorry about it. We keep it seasonal around these parts. Every Saturday, I venture to the farmer's markets with a general list of items to buy- meat, greens, eggs. But, as seasonal eating goes, there is never a guarantee you will find everything on said list. More often, though, I end up finding more. The market is full of beautiful surprises which I just can't pass up. This is precisely I love about eating seasonally and this is how I came upon these carrots.

I already had a big fat bundle of workhorse carrots in my market sack from my friends at Way of Life Farm, the kind of sturdy staples you need for mirepoix and flavor bases. But, when I landed at Atherton Market (my second stop on Saturdays), I noticed the daintiest bundles of rainbow carrots lining the Coldwater Creek Farms booth. I made a mental note to return after circling around once. Less than five minutes later, the carrots were nearly wiped out. I scooped up the last two skinny bundles in a hurry.  

I love roasting a skinny carrot and dressing it up with big flakes of sea salt. Roasting deepens their flavor and gives them a tender crunch while the carrot maintains its trademark sweetness. Finger food at its finest, if you ask me.  On this day, I had some leftover mint and set out to make a mint-pistachio pesto. Except I had no pistachios. I did, however, have walnuts and so it was a mint-walnut pesto I made. I'm learning (slowly) to use what I have instead of running to the store for every little ingredient. It's a hard habit to break, but is helping me to stretch my resourcefulness in the kitchen. 

I was gifted with some lovely light on this Saturday afternoon which made these beauties even more stunning. I couldn't help but honor them with a blog post. I also made kimchi for the first time that day. More on that soon. Until then, enjoy this simple recipe for roasted carrots and keep your eyes peeled for a beautiful bundle in your neck of the woods.

Roasted Carrots with Mint-Walnut Pesto 

2 Bundles of matchstick rainbow carrots

2 tbsp. coconut oil, melted

Salt and Pepper 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread carrots evenly on baking sheet and drizzle with coconut oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 10 minutes and then flip the carrots and roast five minutes more.  Toss carrots with mint-walnut pesto and serve warm if you can. 

For the Pesto (from Bon Appetit)

1 1/2 cups mint leaves 

1 cup flat parsley, with stems

1 garlic clove 

1 anchovy fillet, in oil

1 cup olive oil

1/2 cup finely grated parmesan

1/4 cup walnuts, lightly toasted 

Salt and fresh ground pepper 

Puree the first 7 ingredients in a food processor and season to taste with salt and pepper. Recipe can be made two days ahead. I salted the carrots liberally and so did not need to add extra salt to the pesto recipe that was tossed with the carrots. 

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