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Fresh lemon and herbs mingle with roasted carrots enhanced with warm Silk Road spices and tangy yogurt for a light meal or super swank side!
With much gratitude and appreciation, this recipe courtesy of our friends at Sunset Magazine!
The natural sugar in carrots makes them among the tastiest and most family-approved vegetables to roast. Being available year-round helps, too!
In this method for a Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac, use medium carrots that have been trimmed with about 1-inch of their tops intact, and get ready to serve up something entirely wholesome and fabulously flavorful.
You will 110% want to reserve the carrot greens once you’ve trimmed your carrots. Just soak them in cool water in a large bowl to rinse them of any sand and grit. Then remove as much water as possible by spinning them in a salad spinner.
Wrap in paper toweling and place in a plastic zippered bag for later use in this lovely Carrot Green Pesto. It’s fabulous served atop my Goat Cheese and Chive Grits Souffles. Just a great reason to seek out carrots at your grocer which feature their tops intact.
Do You Have What’s Needed for Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac? Check The List!
- olive oil
- Kosher salt
- ground sumac
- pita bread
- fresh lemon zest
- ground coriander
- ground cumin
- medium sized carrots
- salted butter
- golden raisins
- sliced almonds
- fresh thyme
- whole milk Greek yogurt
- fresh parsley
How This Recipe Came About…
Each time I prepare this roasted carrot platter recipe, I am reminded that flavor profiles are entirely diversified based simply on the preparation method. Root vegetables are the best example of the point I am making.
The natural sugars found in vegetables can yield some pretty damn amazing outcomes. Tossed with a wee bit of olive oil, strewn onto a baking sheet, and given a liberal pinch of Kosher salt before being roasted to just this side of oblivion, these colorful gems make for a filling but lite meal or perfect side dish.
I introduced this particular method during a holiday meal for which I had a pretty large audience. I wanted to see how many would not only help themselves to this, the best roasted carrots on the planet, but also how many would eat it and go back for seconds.
It was a bit embarrassing when there simply were no seconds to go back for…
What Kind of Carrots Should I Use for this Roasted Carrot Platter?
Back in the day at our local Shop Rite in Bernardsville, New Jersey, my mom would buy a bag of carrots. Now, if you’ve ever purchased bagged carrots, they are unusually large carrots and always a bit rough looking.
I don’t think I knew carrots were available in different colors either. I only ever recognized orange as a kid.
Family dinners included boiled carrot coins just about every other night and I grew to HATE carrots. Now that there is a reason to enjoy them though (with added PIZZAZZ I might add), I’m all about these healthy recipes which employ them.
Freshest you can buy should be your rule of thumb for everything of course. There is really no need for me to repeat myself so often, but inevitably I will receive the email asking if “frozen carrots are okay to use?” No. No, they are not.
For this recipe, you do not need a lot of carrots, only about a pound medium carrots. Avoid smaller carrots as well as baby carrots, as they shrivel to next to nothing during the oven roast.
Hit your grocer’s produce section. Look for carrots with their frilly tops intact. Why? Twofold – lush green tops are the first indicator the carrots are fresh. And then there’s the bit I mentioned earlier about my method for a simple Carrot Top Pesto to adorn these GORGEOUS Goat Cheese and Chive Grits Souffles.
And if that weren’t reason enough, remember, the carrot tops make a lovely addition to salads and compound butter and even chopped right into this very dish. Go ahead, argue with me. THEY’RE BEAUTIFUL…
Oh, and select any color or mixture of colors. Gourmet grocery stores often mix rainbow carrots, so you receive an array. I’m going all orange today to capture what I call my ‘sunshine on a plate.’
What Is Sumac and Where Do I Find It?
Sumac is distantly related to the cashew believe it or not and is used as a spice, as a dye, and in medicine. Sumacs (of which there are roughly 35 species that they know of) grow in subtropical and temperate regions throughout the world, including East Asia, Africa, and North America.
It’s during the fall that these bushes flowers turn to fruit that resemble berries at first glance. The sumac of which I reference for this carrot recipe is ground into a fine powder. It’s a great spice to add to dishes because it adds a tangy flavor with just a little heat.
You can find sumac with the rest of the herbs and spices in the baking isle. It may sound exotic, but really, it’s a plant that has been being used in many ways right here in North America for hundreds and hundreds of years, exemplified by Native Americans.
What Does Sumac Taste Like?
Sumac is fruity (almost berry-like), citrusy, and very, very fragrant. There is no other spice or spice blend out there that comes anywhere close to sumac, so do search for it if you’re able. But what to do if you cannot find sumac?
If you cannot find sumac, consider using Za’atar in equal or additional measure, tamarind in serious moderation, or lemon pepper seasoning also in in equal or additional measure.
How To Make a Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac?
Prepare to tuck this in your recipe box under ‘easy recipes’ after your first bite…I swear…this will become among your favorite ways to use and prepare carrots forever. And it will come in handy for that dinner party side dish recipe everybody will compliment you on!
For the Carrots
Start by scrubbing and trimming the raw carrots. I rarely whip out my vegetable peeler for this method IF I can use a vegetable bush and get ’em good and clean. I am okay with an unpeeled carrot as long as I can get it super clean. Leave about 1-inch of intact greens on the tops.
I use a sharp kitchen knife and CAREFULLY run the knife right down the middles to create halves. Not only will the carrots roast fast, but from a pound of carrots, you know have double the surface area that is subject to the caramelization process in the oven. It’s the best way.
Organizing the Other Ingredients
Next, pull the yogurt from your refrigerator and scoop it out into a bowl to come to room temperature while you prepare everything else.
Grab a sheet pan. Place it on a comfortable work surface and begin preheating your oven to 450°F.
Begin by combining a few tablespoons of olive oil – good quality olive oil – in a medium bowl and add some of that sumac we talked about. Sumac and some Kosher salt and whisk it all together.
Work right on top of your baking sheet and set up an assembly line with the oil mixture, pita breads (you can also use Naan if you prefer), and a pastry brush. Tear off a large sheet of aluminum foil and place it at the end of your line.
Brush each pita lightly on both sides with the oil and stack them as you finish. Cut the stack right down the middle and place the lot atop the foil.
Wrap the pitas and set aside for the time being.
Using the same bowl used for the sumac oil, add some additional sumac and salt followed by fresh lemon zest, coriander, cumin, and more oil. Place carrots in the bowl several at a time and toss to coat.
Now spread the carrots out evenly in a single layer on the baking sheet. Transfer carrots to the hot oven and roast carrots for between 15 and 20 minutes. You’ll know when they are ‘there’ because their edges will begin to turn a lovely shade of golden brown.
Also at this time, add the foil-wrapped pitas to another oven rack and heat for 10-ish minutes. You want the pitas to remain pliable and slightly soft but warmed through. Any longer than 10 minutes and they risk crisping.
Pull the carrots and allow them to cool right on the baking sheet. Set aside whil you prepare the warm raisin and spice Aigre-Doux. That’s fancy French talk for sauce!
Assembling the Warm Raisin and Spice Aigre-Doux
Cook a bit of salted butter in a saucepan with the intention of making brown butter. If you are unsure how to cook butter to brown it, or what brown butter is, follow my instructions found in the recipe card notes herein.
To the melted butter, add golden raisins, sliced almonds, fresh thyme, and (you guessed it!) more sumac. The goal here is to bloat the raisins, so cook them gently for about 1 minute until they puff up, stirring all the while.
As the raisins cool, whisk combine yogurt with some Kosher salt and thyme for the yogurt sauce. I also take some liberties here and add in additional fresh herbs if I’m feeling daring. Marjoram, finely minced parsley, and usually some of the bright green carrot tops make for flavorful additions without adding a foreign element to the natural sweetness of the carrots.
Assembling It All
Select a pretty platter. Use a large spoon to spread the yogurt onto the platter in a quasi-swirly even layer. In another bowl, toss the roasted sweet carrots with the raisin and nut mixture to coat everything very well.
Spoon the carrot mixture over the yogurt. I finish the plate with a healthy pinch of sea salt and a good drizzle of olive oil over everything. Serve with the warm pita halves and a good chilled white or rosé wine.
Modifying the Norm to Make It Not Entirely Average…
I love this simple recipe for what it is – a simple recipe. That is not to say however that some great addition or another of a unique ingredient wouldn’t still garner this a great recipe.
In the past, I have added a teaspoon of curry powder to the raisin and nut mixture for additional fragrance and flavor. And a thin drizzle of tahini sauce in conjunction with the olive oil before serving is so, so fabulous.
Honestly, so many delicious additions come to mind when serving this dish. Some salty Feta cheese, pomegranate arils, toasted sesame seeds, fresh lemon juice, crushed fennel seed, a drizzle of real maple syrup, or plain and simple freshly cracked black pepper would take this carrots recipe to the next level and maybe even beyond.
What To Serve with a Roasted Carrot Platter?
In the beginning of this post, I mentioned that this carrot main dish could serve as a lite meal for two persons if you were to bake pita chips to accompany it.
If, however you wanted this as a side dish, consider roast chicken or these pork chops. I also like it served with this roasted butternut squash side dish to round out the sweet with the savory.
What to Drink with This Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac?
This is an important question for me to answer I think because you do not want anything too sweet here. Proverb is a lovely ‘right down the middle of the road’ rosé wine which I HIGHLY RECOMMEND to highlight this dish. It boasts notes of both cherry and strawberry and has a trace of minerality on the finish. It’s a very versatile Rosé pairs nicely with roasted carrots.
In terms of beer, any India pale ale is a winner. Think ‘less hoppy’ and steer toward ‘light and crisp’ when making your selections.
Can Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac Be Made Ahead?
The entire dish may be made ahead of time up to 5 hours. Stop before plating and chill the yogurt mixture and the carrot mixtures separately each in an airtight container. Bring everything to room temperature 1 1/2 hours prior to assembling the platter and serving.
If You Like This Recipe…
…you might also like:
Roasted Carrot Platter with Yogurt and Sumac
- 5 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt divided
- 2 ½ teaspoons ground sumac divided
- 4 to 6 (6-inch) pita breads
- ½ lemon zested
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 pound medium carrots peeled, trimmed, scrubbed, and halved lengthwise down the middle
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- ¼ cup golden raisins
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- 1 teaspoon thyme fresh, divided
- 1 ½ cups whole-milk Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon parsley chopped
- Spoon the yogurt into a bowl. Set aside and allow it to come to room temperature while you prepare the carrots and the pitas.
- Preheat oven to 450°. In a medium bowl, combine 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon of the Kosher salt, and 1 teaspoon of the sumac. Use a pastry brush to brush the sumac oil all over each pita. Stack the breads after oiling and cut in halve. Wrap the stack in heavy gauge aluminum foil and set aside.
- Wash and trim the carrot tops to 1-inch. Set tops aside for another use. Use a sharp kitchen knife and CAREFULLY run the knife right down the middles to create halves. Using the same bowl used for the sumac oil, add an additional 1 teaspoon sumac and 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt followed by fresh lemon zest, coriander, cumin, and remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Place carrots in the bowl and toss to coat.
- Spread the carrots out evenly in a single layer on a baking sheet. Transfer carrots to the hot oven and roast carrots for between 15 and 20 minutes or until they begin to turn golden brown. After 10 minutes of roasting, add the foil-wrapped pitas to separate oven rack. Heat for the remainder of the roasting time, about 10 minutes. Remove all from the oven and set aside to cool.
- Melt butter in a shallow saucepan over medium-low heat and brown. NOTE see my instructions for browning butter in the notes below. Add raisins, sliced almonds, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, and remaining the 1/2 teaspoon of sumac. Cook gently until the raisins puff up, about 1 minute. Let cool.
- To the now room temperature yogurt, add 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon thyme and whisk. Spread yogurt onto a pretty serving platter. Toss the carrots with the raisin-nut mixture and the chopped parsley. Spoon over yogurt and serve drizzle with olive oil and finish with a liberal pinch of sea salt if desired. Unwrap the warmed pitas and serve alongside the carrot platter.
Please Note that table salt and iodized salt are NOT substitutions for Kosher salt. Do not use table salt or iodized salt in any of the recipes you find on Not Entirely Average UNLESS specified otherwise.Make Ahead through step 5, up to 5 hours in advance and chill yogurt and carrots separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator. Bring carrots and yogurt to room temperature, about 1 1/2 hours before assembling and serving. Reheat pitas in foil as necessary.
How To Brown Butter
by cutting unsalted butter into small pieces and place it in a light-colored pot or pan. Light-colored cookware ensures you can see how dark the butter gets as it cooks, while small pieces enable it to melt and cook evenly.
on the heat to medium and let the butter melt. This step requires constant monitoring as the butter will go from liquid to brown in mere minutes. High heat will brown the butter very quickly, but if you don’t keep a close eye on it, the milk solids could sink to the bottom of the pan and burn. So, no stepping away, and maintain medium heat versus high heat.
can take the pan off the burner because the butter will continue cooking even after you off the heat. The butter should be an acorn brown color and smell slightly nutty. Pour the brown butter into a bowl to end the cooking process. Now it is ready to use.
The nutrition value can vary depending on what product(s) you use. The information below is an estimate. Always use a calorie counter you are familiar with.
Please note that table salt and iodized salt are NOT substitutions for Kosher salt. Do not deviate unless otherwise specified.