Eat Well Nov. 7. 2013
Sides

Roasted Carrots with Sweet Tahini Drizzle

Nov. 7. 2013
Sides
McKel Hill, MS, RDN, LDN

McKel Hill, MS, RDN, LDN

Dietitian, Founder

It’s the first week of November so I can officially (with no guilt) dive into making recipes for Thanksgiving… YEY! Roasted Carrots with Sweet Tahini Drizzle is a perfect vegetarian friendly side dish to be shared and enjoyed with everyone in the family. I’ll be posting more of my favorite Thanksgiving side dishes, entrees, and desserts this whole month so stay tuned! For now, let’s talk about these gorgeous carrots though, I mean seriously, how beautiful is this dish! It’s a beautifully rustic yet sophisticated looking dish that will make any Thanksgiving or holiday table look that much more inviting.

I love Thanksgiving, not for the cliche food coma that typically ensues, or the relaxing time with friends and family, but actually giving thanks. It’s important taking this time of year to reflect on things I’m grateful for and to give thanks to those who have supported me this past year- especially in launching my own business, creating this blog to share with all of you, and continuing to live out my passions and do what I love to do on a daily basis- for this I’m extremely grateful and blessed. Don’t get me wrong though, Thanksgiving has it’s food perks! It’s a time of year where fine china/dishes come out of hiding, recipes come out of the dusty cookbooks, and everyone grabs an apron to help cook.

So let’s embrace this time of year and dedicate this holiday season to not only enjoying the food we’ve made, but also connecting with your loved ones in the kitchen, relaxing the mind, and most importantly nourishing your body with whole real foods from the earth. If you’re unsure or intimated on how to make Thanksgiving a bit more healthy this year, stick with me and I promise to share some new recipes from my holiday table to your holiday table.

This recipe highlights everything wonderful about carrots, from it’s beautiful orange color, it’s slightly sweet and earthy flavor, to the al dente texture. I love coupling tahini with carrots- I always have enjoyed this flavor combination and continue to eat this as a snack most days. I wanted to kick the sophistication up a notch, given it’s the holiday season and all, herein lies how this recipe came about.

Carrots are one of my favorite root veggies, I love them steamed, raw, roasted, pureed, blended in a soup, in desserts, etc. Many of you know that carrots are high in vitamin A, but carrots are also great sources of other nutrients. Also note, there are different varieties of carrots such as yellow, purple, red, and white in addition to the common orange. Red and purple carrots tend to have more anthyocyanindin antioxidants, yellow carrots have less beta-carotene and more lutein antioxidants, and orange carrots have the most beta-carotene. The antioxidants and nutrients found in carrots have been shown to help with cardiovascular health, vision health, and anti-cancer benefits as well!

Another interesting tip about carrots, is typically I recommend consuming the majority of your veggies raw to ensure you’re getting the most nutrients, phytonutrients, and antioxidants as possible; but carrots are one of few vegetables that increase in nutrient density when lightly cooked– the beta-carotene becomes more bioavailable.

Nutrient breakdown of CARROTS |

  • Vitamin A } 100g contains about 276% RDA
  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin C
  • Potassium
  • Fiber
  • Manganese
  • B Vitamins } B1, B12, B3, B6
  • Vitamin E
  • Antioxidants } most notably carotenoids (alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and lutein), hydroxycinnamic acids (caffeic acid, coumaric acid, and ferulic acid), and anthocyanindins (cyanidins and malvidins)

FOOD PRESENTATION TIP // Purchase carrots with stems and cut all but a small bit (as shown in my pictures) for a rustic looking, right out of the garden feel to enhance the presentation of this dish. Also garnish with sesame seeds and fresh parsley for a pop of color and flavor.

Be sure to “save” this recipe for when Thanksgiving comes around!

 

Roasted Carrots with Sweet Tahini Drizzle
Recipe Type: side dish, small plates
Author: McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6
A sweet and savory side dish of roasted carrots and a creamy tahini sauce.
Ingredients
  • 12 large carrots, whole and tops removed
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini
  • 3 tablespoons of filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (to taste)
  • juice of a fresh lemon
Instructions
  1. CARROTS //
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  3. Cut the tops off the whole carrots, wash, dry, and place on a lined baking sheet.
  4. Drizzle melted coconut oil onto the carrots and stir with your hands to make sure the carrots are evenly coated.
  5. Add fresh black pepper, dash of cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon sea salt.
  6. Bake for 45 minutes or until tender (you have a lot of options here, I personally like to keep the carrots a little al dente meaning with a crunch in the center. If you like a softer carrots, bake longer).
  7. TAHINI DRIZZLE //
  8. In a small mixing bowl combine tahini, maple syrup, 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and water until thick and creamy.

FUN FACT // Ever turn orange from eating too many carrots? This is actually common in my fellow veg-lovin’ friends and not dangerous! It’s called carotenodermia, which happens when you eat very large amounts of carotene-rich foods that results in a yellowish discoloration of the skin- I refer this to having a golden glow. No worries though, carotenodermia isn’t associated with any health problems and clears after your slow down on eating carotene-rich foods. Side note: females who eat more carotene-rich foods are more attractive, says this study! Carrots are a true beauty food in my book.

 

I hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as I do! This Sweet Tahini Drizzle is one of my favorites to use as a salad dressing, dip, or sauce like shown with this recipe. What’s your favorite way to have carrots? Share below!

With love and gratitude,

xo McKel

The Recipe

Serves 6

Print

Ingredients:

  • 12 large carrots, whole and tops removed
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini
  • 3 tablespoons of filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (to taste)
  • juice of a fresh lemon

Directions:

  1. CARROTS //
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  3. Cut the tops off the whole carrots, wash, dry, and place on a lined baking sheet.
  4. Drizzle melted coconut oil onto the carrots and stir with your hands to make sure the carrots are evenly coated.
  5. Add fresh black pepper, dash of cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon sea salt.
  6. Bake for 45 minutes or until tender (you have a lot of options here, I personally like to keep the carrots a little al dente meaning with a crunch in the center. If you like a softer carrots, bake longer).
  7. TAHINI DRIZZLE //
  8. In a small mixing bowl combine tahini, maple syrup, 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and water until thick and creamy.

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