Blistered Carrots with Pistachio Butter

CARROTS have not been seen on my dinner plate for over 10 years and that was how I liked it. And then one day, I cooked these yummy carrots. I don't really know what happened. I mean, I've always loved those cute little chocolate carrots that Lindt make every year for Easter, but I guess they don't really count as carrots. I've been seeing these 'Dutch' carrots stocked all over the place lately and I suppose I just couldn't resist their cuteness any longer! Especially the purple ones.

Having arrived home with two lovely bunches I wondered what one does with carrots after avoiding them for so many years. Mum and Dad always coated my carrots in honey but I only ate them under the premise that I'd be receiving dessert later. Now I have dessert when I like so that old carrot trick doesn't work on me! (Besides, I'm trekking the culinary globe these days.) But then it hit me; lemon, pistachio and carrot… caramelised a little with some butter, of course. These carrots are sweet but zingy and the innovative addition of the pistachio butter gives a beautiful nutty depth of flavour. Cute and scrumptious, enjoy!

What you'll need:
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
8-10 dutch carrots
40g butter, softened
10g pistachios, chopped well
Sea salt flakes
Olive oil

What to do:
Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking tray. Chop any excess foliage off the carrots and wash them well. Peel lightly and cut off any long, stringy tails.

In a bowl, mix the lemon juice and sugar into thick paste. Add the carrots and use your hands to rub the sugar marinade all over them. Place the carrots on the tray and pour remaining marinade over them. Sprinkle evenly with a good pinch of salt. Bake for 30 minutes but give them a bit of a shuffle after 15.

While this is baking add your chopped pistachios to a small saucepan and fry until they become fragrant, crunchy and golden. Once cooked enough, tip them into the bowl with the butter and stir to combine. Set aside in a cool place.

When the carrots are cooked remove them from the oven. Drizzle some olive oil in the saucepan and when it has heated up, throw in the carrots. When they start to go all bubbly and crisp turn the heat off and add as much of the butter as you want. Give it a good shake and serve warm. Enjoy!