Any vegetable that requires peeling, let alone chopping, is a nightmare for the one-armed cook. To remove tough skin, it really does help to own the sophisticated steadying apparatus that some refer to as their “other hand.” If you don’t, staring down a dozen knobby, stocky adult carrots in need of a good whittling does indeed evoke the feeling of that dream where you’re running but never making any progress. Better, then, to purchase the young, slim roots (about the size of your pointer finger) that need only a good rub under running water to be ready for the roasting pan. The sauce requires just single-handed stirring, the mint single-handed plucking. As for the pomegranate seeds, some kind two-armed creature has already extracted them.
- Preheat your oven to 450°F.
- Pour 2 tablespoons of the oil in a heavy, ovenproof skillet that’s wide enough to fit the carrots in more or less one layer and set it over high heat. When the oil just starts to smoke, add the carrots, sprinkle on 1 teaspoon of the salt, and stir the carrots to coat them in the oil. Cook, turning over the carrots occasionally, until they brown a bit, 6 to 8 minutes.
- Put the skillet in the oven and roast, shaking the pan occasionally, until the carrots are cooked the way you like them: about 8 minutes for carrots that are tender with a slight crunch and 15 minutes for carrots that are fully tender.
- While they’re roasting, combine the yogurt and tahini in a small bowl with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and ½ teaspoon of salt. Stir really well, then squeeze in the juice of half the lemon and stir again. Taste, then add more salt and lemon if you want.
- When the carrots are ready, put them on a platter, drizzle on the yogurt sauce, and sprinkle on the pomegranate seeds and mint. Eat.
JJ Goode helps great chefs write cookbooks.