Monday, October 29, 2012

Spicy Cilantro Carrot Fries

Carrot fries? I had never heard of them until I was browsing Fast Paleo earlier this week and noticed that Liz from Paleo on a Budget posted a recipe for Roasted Carrot Fries. I started doing a little research and realized this was obviously a secret the entire cooking community had been keeping from me. It seems everyone has a version carrot fries, even Martha Stewart, and I wanted in.

I was making these Sweet and Spicy Sausage Stuffed Peppers and was in need of a side dish. I just happened to have a big bunch of carrots in the fridge and images of carrot fries dancing around in the back of my mind. I wanted them to compliment the Southwestern theme I had going on with the peppers so I started rooting around the kitchen for ideas. There, in the back of the fridge, was a big bunch of cilantro. Cilantro usually gets neglected around here in the winter months. We'll buy some for a particular recipe and the rest is typically forgotten until it starts to look sad and depressed and we have to throw it out (into the compost bin, of course).

So I had my carrots and my cilantro and finally decided on a spicy cilantro pesto.  I love pesto of any kind, but pesto and carrots? That was a new one for me. But when all was said and done they were pretty darn tasty. The jalapeno adds just a hint of heat and the cilantro compliments the carrots nicely.

Spicy Cilantro Roasted Carrot Fries
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


-12 large carrots
-1 tbsp olive oil
-2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
-1 cup tightly packed cilantro leaves
-1/2 jalapeno pepper, roughly chopped
-1 tbsp lime juice
-Dash of salt and pepper
-1 tsp cumin
-1/4 cup olive oil


-Preheat oven to 400 F
-Cut carrots into small (about 2 inches long) sticks (we are making fries here, cut them to about the size of a french fry!)
-Toss carrots with 1 tbsp of olive oil and spread out in flat in a single layer on a baking sheet
-Bake for 20 minutes
-While the carrots are baking, add garlic, cilantro, jalapeno, lime juice, salt and pepper, and cumin to a food processor.
-Start processor and while running slowly add the olive oil. Process until smooth.
-Remove carrots from oven and transfer to a large bowl. Toss with pesto. Return to oven for an additional 5 minutes.