This simple bowl reminded me of why I actually started this site in the first place. With the emails, sorta silly mismatched dish piles, multiple attempts at a palatable goji berry sauce (one day I’ll get it) etc., this sort of reminder is a surprising ray of light. It’s kind of soup-y, but also kind of not. It’s also mostly just carrots and spice served with a bit of rice and sprouts. It’s affordable as all get-out, quick to throw together and warming to the core. Most of these ingredients were pantry stock for me and I imagine if you’ve been here before, they might be for you too.
I may have overkilled it with turmeric-focused recipes here in the last while, so I hope you don’t mind another. Didn’t you know that all of the cool kids are staining their counters and wooden spoons with this stuff? I roast a couple carrots with thyme until they’re sweet and while that’s happening I make up this sharp miracle broth of sorts. It begins with minced shallot, garlic, ginger and turmeric. A little sparkle of lemon at the end keeps it from seeming flat. You could add a chili or something hot if you want too. It has all of the zing of turmeric tea, but in a more obviously savoury form. Once I had a taste of it all mingled around the sweet carrots and nutty rice, I kind of wondered where it had been all winter (and, news flash, this winter’s been hella long). I like green things so there’s a little tangle of sprouts/shoots (aaaaalways in season) on top of this as well.
When I was studying nutrition in culinary school, we had guest speakers from time to time. Some of them were reputable/interesting and some of them were clearly on the grind and grindin’ hard. One of the good ones was this older man of about 75-ish who was enamoured with sprouts. His name was Tony and he sold sprout growers for home use. Oh, and he maintained a website with up to date information on various styles of dance lessons/dance related socials in the province of Ontario (but also Florida). He absolutely glowed. His business cards promoted “LIVE GREEN FOOD FOR HEALTHY DANCERS.” He told us that he ate 3 tablespoons of sprouts every morning and dang if we didn’t all buy one of those guaranteed-for-life devices by the end of the class.
I honestly have no idea where that thing got to, but I still make a habit of eating sprouts as often as I can. For the amount of nutrition bundled in their little shoots, they’re cheap sustenance. If you think of a young child, all energy and potential, and then how that child grows into an adult, for better or for worse from a health standpoint… a sprout/small shoot is like the plant version of that youthful essence, all bouncing off the walls and full of possibility. I mostly like having them around because they add a bit of freshness to the non-stop roasted roots and lentil-y things that seem to be prevalent this time of year. I’m partial to sunflower + sweet pea shoots and Sarah even has some instructions on handling those all by yourself.
So we have roots, sprouts, brown rice, and healing spices. All the makings of some warming hippie health moments, or maybe just a quiet winter’s lunch. Hope you’re all getting some of those these days. xo
roasted carrots + rice with zingy turmeric broth recipe
notes: Any roasted root or tuber would be excellent in place of the carrots. This dish is mostly about the interaction of the caramelized, lightly sweet vegetables and the sharp broth.
2 medium carrots, scrubbed + cut into 1 inch pieces
fresh/dried thyme leaves (+ extra for the broth)
salt + pepper
sizeable knob of coconut oil/ghee
1/2 shallot, fine dice
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled + minced
1-2 tsp ground turmeric
1 cup filtered water
juice from 1/2 a lemon
cooked brown/wild/whatever rice for serving (or another grain you like)
sprouts/shoots/small greens of some kind (I like sunflower shoots)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a small baking sheet with parchment.
Toss the carrots with some thyme, oil, salt + pepper. Scatter them in a single layer on the baking sheet and slide them into the oven. Roast for about 20 minutes or until the carrots are browned in spots and soft.
Meanwhile, heat the coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the shallots. Stir them about and sauté them until translucent and soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and a sprig of thyme if you like (or a sprinkle of dried thyme leaves). Stir this mix about until it’s very fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the turmeric to the pot and stir to incorporate. Keep stirring until the mix seems paste-like. You’re cooking the raw-ness out of the spice at this point, ideally for about 3 minutes (add more coconut oil if necessary). Slowly add the water and stir. Gently simmer the broth for 10 minutes or so. Add the lemon juice and stir at the end. Season the broth with salt and pepper.
Place the roasted carrots and rice in a bowl. Strain the turmeric broth if you like, then ladle it on top. Garnish the bowl with sprouts and sesame seeds if you like.