miso glazed carrots + honeyed garlic

I've been frequenting the farmers' markets so much lately and figured I was well overdue in my efforts to get creative in the kitchen using the fruits and veggies that are native to Japan; I have been a bit remiss in that department for some time now. Maybe it's the weather that has been making things dark and drab around here - the sun never seems to want to shine anymore. But, fortunately, it wasn't anything a trip to the local farmer's market couldn't help. So I set out to get creative! Oddly enough, it was carrots that inspired me today. They were some of the most beautifully colored carrots I have ever seen. I know that probably seems silly, but their hue was so deep and rich that I just had to pick them up.

It was also kind of a no-brainer when I saw the garlic. Oh, the garlic. It was also beautiful! I immediately thought how wonderful the two would be together. How simple and yet so delicious!

Yesterday I picked up some miso paste at my favorite local organic store. It's fun getting to know the store owners of the places I visit often. I always come in with questions and they're always eager to give me answers.

This recipe is relatively simple. Considering the depth of flavor you would think there is more to it than there actually is. For the miso glaze, I used a white miso, or "shiromiso" - it's flavor is light and mildly sweet. I simply mixed about 2 tablespoons of miso with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of agave nectar, and a teaspoon of soy. Then I added about 1/4 cup of water and mixed it again until it was more of a "glaze" consistency. I poured it over the carrots, threw them in the cast iron skillet with the garlic which I drizzled with honey beforehand and that was it. For my first shot at it and for such an impromptu meal I was more than pleased and can't wait to share it. I only wish I had made twice as much!

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