Vegetables in winter can be kind of ho-hum. I was looking at the choices in my vegetable drawer, knowing that I had rainbow carrots. I have been making my standard glazed carrots recipe, which is very good. When I spotted the leeks buried under various lettuces and such, I knew I had a chance to shake things up. The leeks added a mellow sweet onion flavor in complement to the carrots. Plus, their vibrant green color was gorgeous against the variety of rainbow carrot colors. To add balance to the dish overall, I deglazed the pan with honey and a bit of apple cider vinegar. Serving the carrots with a rich roasted meat such as a roast chicken or braised short ribs provides the perfect side dish.
Glazed Carrots and Leeks
1 pound rainbow carrots
1 large leek
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
chopped fresh parsley for garnish
Prepare the vegetables: Peel the carrots, cutting each carrot on the bias down the length of the carrot to create angled pieces about 3-inches long. Cut the leek lengthwise down the middle to open it up to thoroughly wash the interior of the leek layers. Cut away the dark green leaves, discarding them. Once clean, cut across the leek into 1-inch pieces, using only the white and light green sections. Smash the garlic cloves to remove the skins, then mince into tiny pieces.
Working with a large 11-inch heavy bottomed skillet, such as Le Creuset or Lodge, over medium-high heat, add in the butter and oil, swirling the pan to combine. Add in the cut carrots, stirring to coat in the butter/oil. Cook the carrots for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in the cut leeks, stirring to combine. Sprinkle in the salt, continue cooking the carrots and leeks for another 5 minutes. Add in the garlic, cooking for 1 minute. Carefully add in the water, cooking until the water is cooked down to almost completely gone. The pan should look saucy, and the carrots and leeks should be tender. If they are not tender, add 2 tablespoons of water and continue cooking. When the carrots are tender, add in the honey and vinegar, stirring to combine to glaze the vegetables, cooking for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and garnish with the chopped parsley.