Since signing up for my weekly CSA box, I’ve had the opportunity to play around with new vegetables and incorporate them in my family’s rotation of recipes. This Carrot, fingerling potato, and pea ragout is a fantastic sunday supper side or recipe for entertaining.
I know I am bound to get fresh farm carrots soon, so I know the carrots will be sweeter and a lot more tender. Just last week I received some fingerling sweet potatoes; and although I contemplated using them for this recipe… I think I am going to roast a chicken and cook them along with turnips in the pan. Of course, I could always roast the sweet potatoes with pecans…
Cooking, testing recipes, incorporating new ingredients to our old favorites takes a lot of time. Lately, it’s become increasingly difficult to manage work, life, children, commitments, book revisions, recipe development… and some days, I wish I had more hours in my day. My good friend continues to remind me that God only made days with 24 hours for a reason.
With a lot of cooking comes a lot of dirty dishes and cleaning my kitchen. Some days, I go to a friend’s house to cook and develop recipes there. She also has a garden with fresh herbs and fantastic lighting in her house. Most importantly, our friendship is strong and she is encouraging about all the things I contemplate doing. I am most grateful for her listening ear, non judgmental attitude, and loving heart. Our conversation makes the cleanup sessions a lot more fun.
This is a particular busy time of the year for many of us who develop recipes in our blogs. There is holiday cooking, baking, desserts… then followed with healthy recipes for the new year. Earlier this year, I came to the conclusion that it’s best to eat real food year round. Although I do try to follow what you might be looking for at each time of the year…
Anyways, back to my CSA vegetable box. At first, I had some reservations. Would I like the stuff in it? Would the box contain veggies my family would acutally eat? What if I forgot to pick up a week? And most importantly, how was I going to incorporate an unknown mix of veggies in my meal plan when I plan on Saturdays and the veggies are picked up on Wednesdays?
The first two weeks was rough and I felt lost when it came to using things like okra and collard greens. I might live in the south but I’ve never cooked with those ingredients before. Before you say: Okra is easy to put in gumbo! Yes, I know. However, my husband doesn’t like okra in his gumbo -at all. Plus, I think my gumbo recipe rocks as is.
One of the things I love about this recipe is that It allows you to use up potatoes before they go bad in your pantry. While it calls for fingerling potatoes you can also use any potato you might have and cut it into larger squares. I sometimes make this with that bag of baby carrots that I forgot to use and was nearly forgotten at the bottom of the produce drawer; and of course, I always have frozen peas in the freezer (because I rarely have fresh peas around).
This is the perfect side dish that combines a vegetable and a starch… for times where you want to serves something that looks fancy but yet was incredibly easy to put together. Enjoy!
Carrot, Fingerling Potato, and Pea Ragout Recipe
- Yield: 6 1x
- Category: Dinner
- 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 3 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil; more as needed
- 1 ½ pounds large carrots, cut into 2-inch-long, ½ inch thick sticks
- Kosher salt
- 12 ounces small fingerling potatotes, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 cup chicken broth, stock, or water
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¾ cup fresh peas, blanched, or frozen peas
- 1 cup (packed) fresh baby spinach leaves
- 2 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
- Finely grate the lemon to yield 1 teaspoon zest and juice it to yield 1 ½ teaspoon juice
- In a small bowl combine the zest, juice, vinegar, maple syrup, and 1 tablespoon water.
- In a 5-to-6 quart dutch oven (or other deep wide pan), heat 1 tablespoon of the butter and the olive oil over low heat. A
- Add the carrots and ¾ teaspoon salt. Cover and cook, stirring frequently but gently, until the carrots are nicely browned and just tender, about 20 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the carrots to a large plate.
- Add 1 tablespoon butter to the remaining fat in the pan. When the butter has melted, arrange the fingerlings cut side down in a single layer in the pan and season with ¾ teaspoon salt.
- Cover partially and cook, undisturbed, until the potatoes are deep golden-brown on the bottom, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the chicken broth or water and bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer and cover partially.
- Cook until the potatoes are tender and the liquid has reduced to 2 to 3 tablespoons, 12 to 14 minutes.
- Add the garlic to the potatoes and cook, stirring very gently, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the reserved carrots and the peas, spinach, and lemon juice mixture. Stir gently until the spinach is wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the pan form the heat and stir in the remaining 1 ½ tablespoons of butter until just melted. Stir in the tarragon. Transfer the vegetables to a platter and serve.