I lied when I said my only food rule growing up was “no Japanese desserts.” I had one other, not insignificant, food aversion: carrots. There were other foods I did not much like–chocolate, grapefruit, beets, any recipe where a fish-head was used to make broth–but my dislike of carrots became a strange part of my identity. So, while I regularly crossed other food dislikes off my list and now eat chocolate, grapefruit and beets with sometimes-unfortunate-abandon, carrots remained a non-starter.
In the last few years, however, that dislike has broken down bit-by-bit. This hasn’t been easy. “If I don’t like carrots, who am I?” I often wonder. I blame Noah’s father for this identity crises. The Moroccan Carrots he serves annually at Passover are where it all began.
At first, I thought I only liked those carrots on that night, yet another reason it was different from all other nights. But after a year or two of that, I went home and made myself a big bowl of Moroccan carrots to keep eating even after Passover ended. From there it was a slippery slope. I made these carrots at least six times this fall. I have added carrots to roast vegetable mixes by choice, and fished them out of the bowl and on to my plate deliberately. Perhaps most incriminatingly, I have since driven not insignificant distances to purchase Sofra’s Moroccan Carrot spread.
But, my semester in Cambridge is over, and driving 2 1/2 hours to restock on carrot spread is, I suppose, insane. So, last night I decided to figure out how to make it. We brought the results to a poker game where it was declared a success.
Moroccan Carrot Spread:
– 1 pound carrots
– 3 cloves garlic
– Juice of 1/2 a lemon and its zest
– 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
– 1/2 teaspoon cumin
– 1/ 4 teaspoon hungarian paprika
– 3 tablespoons olive oil + more olive oil for roasting carrots
– 1/2 teaspoon honey
– Salt to taste
* Heat oven to 450 degrees.
* Peel and slice carrots in to small slices.
* Toss carrots with olive oil and roast until soft and slightly browned, about 15 minutes. I would check and toss them after 7 minutes.
* Combine roasted carrots with other ingredients in food processor and or blender until smooth. Add the olive oil a tablespoon at a time as you blend.
* Serve with pita, chips, celery, or other tools for scooping up delicious things.