In Market Basket, of all places, I spied some maroon carrots, and though I had seen pictures and heard tales, I'd never seen them up close and personal before. So I decided to make friends and take them home.
These are Little Bear Brand Beta Sweet Maroon Carrots, with a Plant Variety Protection Certificate pending by the Texas A & M University System. When I first brought them home, B asked, "are they heirloom carrots?" Genetically modified to pretend they are heirloom, I had to answer. I hadn't really examined them in the store, and I wish I had. I'm not usually into foods with patents. Nonetheless, I had a good time with the maroon carrots, and I have insider knowledge that there will be some genuine heirloom variety organic maroon carrots at the farmer's market this summer. And I won't have to feel doubly bad that I inadvertently supported the Texas economy.
I had thought they were maroon through and through, so I was going to matchstick them, saute them just a moment, then make a sort of lime-ginger-dressing, a bit of a warmed through dish, but with fresh, bright flavors.
But they aren't maroon through and through, so I knew julienne would be dissapointing. Oh for a mandoline! But I managed to slice them, then I decided to steam them just a bit, and so on . . .
Very very yummy, and I'm sure it would be a good quick dish with just plain carrots, though not nearly as fun. When I was imagining this dish, I imagined radishes into it, and when I make it again this summer, I will add them. Hopefully by then a mandoline will appear in my house, because a few paper thin radish slices are just the oomph this dish wants, just that bit of bright crispy summer.
Carrots Yummy Enough To Be Called Dinner
enough for two for a light dinner, or four as a side
4 maroon carrots
Juice of 1 lime
1 tsp fresh minced ginger
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tbl seasoned rice vinegar
2 tsp light soy sauce
heavy pinch o' salt
1 tbl cilantro, minced
Slice the carrots on the bias into discs, then steam for a brief but intense 3 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk the remaining ingredients together. Drain carrots, and toss with dressing.