Young spring carrots and parsnips roasted to perfection with a drizzle of honey and some fresh thyme.
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Spring carrots and parsnips roasted to perfection
I adore spring carrots and parsnips. When the early veg starts to become available from March onwards, I head out and search. Fresh, succulent and tender, there is something extra special about eating it… Providing of course, it is cooked in a way that draws out and accentuates the sweetness and flavours locked inside.
I am not a great fan of carrots or any other root veg chopped and boiled. But spring carrots drizzled with honey, softly roasted to the point of caramelisation and seasoned with carefully chosen herbs will send me weak at the knees. It’s utter perfection… Honey-glazed and thyme roasted, accompanied with a smattering of spring parsnips… what could be better?
Easy to prepare and roast
Cooking root vegetables this way is one of my favourite side dishes, not just for the incredible flavours and sticky-tender texture, but because it is so easy. Every time I throw them in the oven, I wonder why on earth people bother with the whole boil to a pulp routine.
Using spring carrots also cuts down on the whole peeling faff as well… All they need is a good wash and a little scrape and they’re good to go. Toss in a little olive oil, add a little honey, a sprinkle of fresh herbs and some salt and pepper and roast lovingly…
Finding spring carrots… Use your local farm shops
Although some of the better supermarkets will stock spring carrots and parsnips when in season, I prefer to use local farm shops. Not only will it support the local economy and growers, but the veg is likely to be fresher.
When I spotted these baby parsnips and purple spring carrots in my favourite farm shop (Macknade in Faversham), I just knew I needed to eat them. I also knew that the colour contrast of bright orange carrots against deep, almost gothic purple ones was going to make a stunning dish of loveliness. Adding the creamy-white baby parsnips was the icing on the cake.
Roasting with fresh spring thyme exudes a wonderful floral scent and a hint of aromatic herbyness. It also looks beautiful laid across the vibrant, honey-sweet carrots. And for the final touch, throw on a handful of sesame seeds for a little crunch and nuttiness. Delicious!
Made spring carrots Roasted with Honey & Thyme?
If you’ve tried my Spring Carrots, Let me know what you think. Have they made you ditch the boiled roots too? I love to hear how people have found my recipes so please leave a comment, rate the recipe or tag me on social media (my links are in the top right corner).
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Spring Carrots & Parsnips – Roasted with Honey & Thyme
- sharp vegetable knife
- roasting tin
- 500 g young/spring carrots mixed colours/rainbow – orange/yellow/purple
- 250 g young/spring parsnips
- a few sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2½ tbsp clear honey
- sea salt to taste
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- Preheat the oven to 200 C/400 F/Gas 6.
- Wash and scrape the parsnips and carrots and trim as necessary. If the vegetables are larger, slice lengthways into batons keeping them as long as possible.
- Lay the carrots and parsnips in a roasting dish, interspersed with sprigs of fresh thyme.
- Drizzle and lightly toss with a little olive oil to coat.
- Drizzle with honey.
- Season with salt and a good grind of pepper to taste.
- Bake for about an hour, turning occasionally until soft and beginning to caramelise. If the carrots and parsnips look like they are beginning to burn, cover with foil to protect.
- When nearly done, sprinkle with a spoonful of sesame seeds and return to the oven for a further 5 minutes.