Glazed carrots with orange and thyme is a simple and tasty way to add some zest to your dinner.
This super simple recipe of caramelised carrots is easy to follow and promises to make your humble carrots be the star of the vegetable show on your plate.
Carrots in an orange and thyme glaze is a lovely variation of the popular honey glazed carrots that so many of us treat our families to at Christmastime.
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What are glazed carrots?
Glazed carrots are tender carrots that are coated in a sweet coating that enhances the natural sweetness of the vegetable.
These glazed carrots in orange and thyme are both cooked then fried in orange juice and fresh thyme. The result is a sweet carrot that has a nice slight herb flavour to it.
We use light brown sugar at the frying stage to create a tasty glaze. And we are sugar to salt well at all stages as this brings out that carrot flavour that we know and love.
What do glazed carrots taste like?
Carrots are generally quite sweet for a vegetable, yet they have an appetising savouriness to them.
The orange juice brings out the sweetness, as well as the acidity of the juice, helps tenderise the carrot.
The fresh thyme is a great pairing for carrots. It’s is wonderfully aromatic and earthy. Thyme is such a simple and easy way to add a bit of interest to carrots.
It’s really important to use salt in both the boiling and sautéing stage of the cooking. Think about how salted caramel tastes so moreish – the same principle applies here. The salt elevates the sweetness of the carrots.
When to serve this glazed carrots recipe
Carrots tend to be available all year round in the supermarkets. They are generally in season in the Northern hemisphere in the summer season, between June and August.
However, carrots are a family favourite and tend to be welcome at almost any mealtime. That’s why it’s so nice to add some variation to the humble carrot and add this tasty glaze.
What dishes do glazed carrots go with?
Obviously we love our roast dinners here at Christmasphere HQ, and glazed carrots are a great vegetable side dish for roast meats or fish. We love this dish with a nut roast, vegetable tart, veggie couscous, and our favourite pies.
Can I substitute any ingredients in this recipe?
The orange juice can be replaced with apple juice if you only have the to hand.
Likewise, the light brown sugar can be substituted with whichever sugar you have to hand, but if you use caster sugar maybe reduced the amount as it is sweeter.
Alternatively, you could replace the light brown sugar with a sweet syrup such as honey, maple syrup, or golden syrup.
The fresh thyme is ideal in terms of herbs but you also try this with dried rosemary, basil, dill, sage, or coriander. Tarragon is a stronger flavour that could add an interesting dimension to this dish.
How simple are glazed carrots to cook?
This recipe is so easy to do. You simply boil the carrots in a saucepan with water, orange juice, and thyme. Once cooked you drain the carrots then fry in a frying pan with more orange juice, sugar, thyme and salt until the liquid reduces down into a glaze. That’s it!
CARROTS WITH ORANGE AND THYME GLAZE (SERVES 6)
500g Chantenay Carrots, or regular carrots sliced in half then halved again lengthways
250ml Orange Juice
6-8 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
2 Large pinches of Sea Salt
1 tbsp Soft Brown Sugar
Boil the carrots in a medium saucepan with a mixture of the water and 150ml of orange juice with 3 or 4 sprigs of thyme and a large pinch of salt for 8 minutes or until cooked through and al dente in texture. Drain and set aside.
In a frying pan stir together the remaining orange juice, light brown sugar, another large pinch of salt, and the leaves of 3 thyme sprigs (just run your fingers down the stem of the sprig to remove the leaves and discard the woody stalk). Bring the mixture to boil.
Add the carrots to the pan and stir gently to coat them in the space. Reduce heat to low and allow to bubble for 5-7 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally to fully coat the carrots with glaze. When the sauce has reduced down it’s ready to serve.