In August it’s perfectly acceptable to toss together some tomatoes, basil and mozzarella and call that dinner. And a ripe, juicy peach with a scoop of vanilla ice cream is an instant hit for dessert. But something changes in the way we celebrate food in the cooler months. There seems to be a sense of pressure to create meals with more intent, more purpose and more effort.
But dropping temperatures and shrinking daylight hours don’t have to coincide with longer hours in the kitchen (unless of course, you want them too!). Fall and winter foods can be just as blissfully uncomplicated as our beloved summer-time meals. It doesn’t all have to be roasted turkeys and made from scratch pumpkin pies. Agreed? OK, good. Let’s keep going.
Roasted root vegetables are to fall as the tomato salad is to summer. It’s my go-to side dish. I love all kinds of combinations of roasted vegetables, but there is something about the simplicity of roasted carrots that is particularly appealing. I prefer mine minimally dressed, with just a bit of olive oil, honey, salt and fresh thyme. And I like to use a mix of colors and leave the ends uncut (laziness = rustic!) for maximal visual impact. If you can’t find rainbow carrots, you can use a combination of parsnips and carrots for some color variation.
These are so good that I ate the WHOLE pan by myself. No lie. After I photographed them, I started nibbling away and the next thing I knew I had consumed a pound of carrots. No biggie. At least it wasn’t a pound of cookies, right?