I received samples of Crown Maple Sugar and Syrups to test in my own kitchen and use in development of this recipe.
My biggest challenge, when it comes to getting vegetables into my family, is my husband. lol The kids have always been pretty good about it, and our grandkids love them, too, but David only CHOOSES to eat vegetables if I remind him. Then he’ll grudgingly push a little space between his meat and potatoes and spoon some onto his plate. He doesn’t hate vegetables. He just doesn’t want to waste his time on them if there is something he likes better. lol So, when I come up with a recipe for veggies, and his exclamation after the first “test-bite” is a groan of rapture and, “You HAVE to blog this!”, I’m pretty confident that I have a winner. Take my word when I tell you these are NOT the glazed carrots of our childhood. These delectable veggies are going to tame your family’s veggie-phobia and have them begging for more! Seriously … mind-melting, tastebud tantalizing good. 🙂 Really! You’re gonna flip for these.
Even better? The most time invested will be peeling and slicing the carrots and parsnips. Cook time is only 5 minutes.
And yes, you did hear me say parsnips. New vegetable for you? It was for us, too, but my family has fallen for them, big time. They look like a white carrot (and I usually find them near carrots in the produce section.) Parsnips don’t have the same sugar-content as carrots, though. They have a wonderfully mild, peppery (not spicy) flavor that is a perfect complement to the sweetness of their orange cousin. How cool is it to introduce a new vegetable into the menu plan and find out it can soar to the top of the list of family favorites!!?!!
Typically, I do not like what I call “sickeningly sweet” dishes or even beverages. I am super picky about sugar when I make anything besides dessert, because the sugar flavor can become overpowering, to the point of completely covering the flavor of the other ingredients in the dish. Which is probably why I have never cared for glazed carrots, until today. This recipe blew my mind and is, literally, THE standard by which all other glazed carrots will be judged, for me. So, how did I “sweeten the pot” without using processed sugar? Just in the most decadent and delicious way you can imagine. I received a sample of Organic Crown Maple Sugar and sample bottles of Organic Crown Maple Syrup, this past week. Pure maple TEMPERS sweetness, in my opinion, so that you enhance natural flavors with just a kiss of sweet, instead of drowning them. I still want to taste the vegetables, herbs and bacon in this recipe and I want the maple flavor to shine, not be swallowed in cloying sugariness. I love how the Crown Maple Sugar complements each of my ingredients without making them disappear into coma-inducing sweetness. It was the perfect sweet enhancer for this recipe. An added benefit? Yes, I have more! Maple syrup and maple sugar are high in antioxidants and nutrients like riboflavin, zinc, magnesium, calcium and potassium. Hello, healthier sweet!
To make Glazed Carrots Supreme, start butter, and all but one sprig of thyme (save one back to have a few leaves for garnishing at the end), cooking in a skillet over medium heat. Then, while they are melding into browned-butter goodness, peel and slice the carrots and parsnips. I cut the slices about 1/4-inch thick. When you’re done peeling and slicing, remove the thyme from the skillet. What’s left will be browned butter that is lightly infused with the flavor of thyme. Now, toss the sliced carrots and parsnips into the browned butter and stir them to be sure they are completely coated with the butter. Turn the heat up to medium high and set your timer for 3 minutes. You can turn and stir the veggies occasionally, if you like, but I love for them to get a little light carmelization around the edges and on both sides, so I usually only turn them once. At the three minute mark, add the Crown Maple Sugar and crumbled bacon. Set the timer for 2 more minutes. You want just enough time for the maple sugar to melt into the browned-butter enveloping your veggies and bacon. The veggies ill be what I like to call “tender crisp”. Most people who “don’t like” cooked vegetables are usually not objecting to the flavor, but the texture. You want the veggies to be tender enough to cut or chew, but still firm, not mushy. There is no need to cook a vegetable to death. To retain the brightest most vibrant color, a mouth-pleasing texture and highest nutrient value, a short cooking time is the best solution for vegetables.
- 1 lb carrots
- 1 lb parsnips
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ cup Crown Maple Sugar
- 3 strips bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
- 8-10 sprigs of fresh thyme
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Start butter, and all but one sprig of thyme (save one back to have a few leaves for garnishing at the end), melting in a skillet over medium heat.
- While butter and thyme cook and butter begins browning, peel and slice the carrots and parsnips. I cut the slices about ¼-inch thick.
- When you're done peeling and slicing, remove the thyme from the skillet. What's left will be browned butter that is lightly infused with the flavor of thyme.
- Toss the sliced carrots and parsnips into the browned butter and stir them to be sure they are completely coated with the butter.
- Turn the heat up to medium high and set your timer for 3 minutes.
- You can turn and stir the veggies occasionally, if you like, but I love for them to get a little light carmelization around the edges and on both sides, so I usually only turn them once.
- Add the Crown Maple Sugar and crumbled bacon, at the three minute mark. Stir to incorporate into all ingredients.
- Set the timer for 2 more minutes. You want just enough time for the maple sugar to melt into the browned-butter enveloping your veggies and bacon.
- Transfer the Glazed Carrot Supreme to a serving dish.
- Strip the leaves from the remaining sprig of thyme and sprinkle over the dish.