It is well into spring on Bruny. Having raised my tomato plants from seed on my dining room table I decided it was time to plant them out in the hot-house. After a week of glorious weather a late season cold snap set in and a rare spring snow blanketed much of the island. The sun is back to day and I went to the garden to check for damage. The tomato seedings survived and have even grown. The outside netted garden is undamaged and radiant. I pulled out a few of my favourite heritage carrots and picked some rainbow chard to have at dinner, pulling a few extra carrots for snacks.
The seeds of wild carrots have been found in Neolithic archaeological sites across Asian and Europe. Carrots were first cultivated in Afghanistan and Turkey some time around the 7th – 8th century and were introduced to the Mediterranean region in the 10th century. The orange carrot of today is thought to have originated from the Netherlands. With the availability of heritage seeds we are now able to grow a variety of carrots from white, yellow, orange, pink and purple. Carrots are rich in vitamins A, B1,B2, B3, B6, C, E and K. They are high in fibre, folate, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus and potassium.
- 1 large bunch mixed carrots
- 6 stalks of rainbow chard.
- 1 bunch chives
- 1 knob of fresh ginger
- 1 fresh red chilli (optional)
- 2 table spoons garlic infused olive oil
- 1 table spoon sesame oil
- fresh ground salt and pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce (optional)
- a few sprigs of fresh chopped parsley for garnish
- 1 table spoon toasted pine nuts for garnish
- wash and dry all vegetables
- chop the chard stalks into small – medium pieces
- cut the carrots in half length ways and then slice the halves diagonally
- thinly slice fresh chilli and chives
- finely chop fresh ginger
- place the garlic infused oil in a heavy based pan and heat to just below simmering point
- add ginger, chilli and chives and chard stalks and cook slowly stirring occasionally until lightly caramelised
- add carrots, salt and pepper, turn heat to lowest setting, stir through and place lid on pan
- cook until carrots are tender stirring occasionally
- remove lid, add sesame oil and soy sauce, simmer for 1 minute
Serve as a side dish topped with toasted pine nuts and freshly chopped parsley