Tarragon + carrot = yum! Chives + parsley + lemon = double yum!
I love tarragon and carrots together. I had some other leftover herbs to use so I threw it all together and crossed my fingers that it would taste good. Sure enough, it did! It is definitely a unique taste, so I would experiment with making half of this recipe at first to make sure you like the flavors together. You can also use cauliflower or chick peas as your base, but I wanted the purple carrots! After reading Jo Robinson's book, "Eating on the Wild Side," I was encouraged to create a dip using purple carrots. Here are some reasons why I chose to use this beautiful vegetable:
** Purple carrots contain anythocyanins, a powerful antioxidant that gives fruits and veggies their deep red, blue, and purple colors. Anthocyanins contain more antioxidant activity than beta-carotene in orange carrots.
**Surprisingly, carrots are actually more nutritious when cooked. The heat breaks down their outside, tough cell wells to increase bioavailability of their nutrients.
**Cook carrots whole! If you cook carrots in their whole form first, then chop them up, you will retain more of their nutrients.
**Carrots contain beta-carotene, which is a beneficial, fat soluble nutrient that is better absorbed when it's eaten with fats. (In this recipe, you have tahini and olive oil to help absorb that beta-carotene!)
Interesting Fact: Did you know orange carrots were one of the last colors of carrots to be cultivated? And they were created to represent a dynasty back in the mid-sixteenth century?! Yep! Apparently, two plant breeders in the Netherlands crossed a yellow mutant carrot with a local red carrot to create an orange color to honor the, "House of Orange," the dynasty of the Netherlands revolt against Spain. You can't make this stuff up!
I cannot take credit for this wonderful carrot information. For more carrot wisdom, check out the National Bestseller book, "Eating on the Wild Side" by Jo Robinson. It is a fascinating read!
Okay, now back to the recipe. I hope you enjoy it. I would love to hear your thoughts!
-6 medium sized purple carrots (about 3 cups)
-3 tbs tahini
-3 tbs lemon juice
-2 tbs olive oil
-2 tbs tarragon, tightly packed
-2 tbs chives, tightly packed
-1/3 cup parsley, tightly packed
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1 clove of garlic (optional-I made mine without and it was still delicious!)
-water for mixing
1. If you are roasting your carrots (see next step), preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2a. Cut the ends of your carrots, wash, and dry. Place the carrots whole in a steamer and steam for about 10-15 minutes or until soft.
2b. I roasted my carrots for this recipe. If you choose to do that, cut the carrots in half lengthwise, coat in olive oil, and bake for 15-20 minutes or until soft.
2. Remove the carrots from the oven and cut into small pieces. Transfer to your blender.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients, except the water, to the blender or food processor. Mix on high, scraping the sides of the blender until the mixture resembles the consistency of hummus.
4. You may need to add a bit of water to help the blender mix. I added about 2 tablespoons of water to mine.
5. Transfer to a serving bowl and top with extra chives if you would like. Serve with crackers, cucumbers, apples, etc. Enjoy!