Honey Roasted Carrots w/ Lemon Tahini Yogurt Sauce

Do you ever feel like you’ve stuffed ten pounds in a five pound sack? ……………………… that’s how we’ve been feeling since arriving in London yesterday morning. We’re here visiting our daughter and her family and, despite a bit of jet lag, we’ve already had way more fun than should be legally allowed. Of course, the best thing has been enjoying the family here and just doing everyday life with them. With four grandchildren, ages seven and under, life is never dull and always full of adventures.

We’ve walked the girls to and from school, wandered through lovely parks, sipped cappucinos at a palace, ridden on the red double decker buses, strolled along the mighty Thames River, checked out the nearby street market, and even found a few fun food props for the blog in the tiny consignment shops along the way. But I have to say, one of the most fun things we did was …………..

Don’t you think I’ve got one of the prettiest daughters ever? …………. and she’s as sweet as she is pretty………. 🙂

…………….. eating lunch at Nopi! Nopi? Oh yes, Nopi!

If you’re a regular visitor at The Café you may recall from past posts that we’re huge fans and love visiting Ottolenghi, a famous London café/deli (with three locations here) whenever we have the opportunity.We’ve also shared numerous, wonderful recipes from the Ottolenghi cookbooks like these Chicken, Zucchini & Fresh Corn Burgers w/ Green Onion & Cumin, this Roasted Squash with Chilli Yogurt and Cilantro Sauce and these Olive Oil Crackers with Sea Salt and Herbs, just to mention a few.

I’d also heard that, in addition to the deli/cafés, there was also a full-fledged “Ottolenghi” restaurant in Soho, the heart of the theater district, called Nopi. I mentioned to my daughter Cait on the way in from the airport, that I’d love to visit Nopi some day; before I knew it, she was on the phone, making reservations for lunch.

After a short nap, we hopped on The Tube (the London underground transport system) and it wasn’t long before I was experiencing a dream come true! Nopi was all I expected and way beyond. The Ottolenhghi team has a magical touch with veggies and fresh produce that’s incredibly delicious and honestly, beyond explanation. Scott took photos, so I’ll just let them explain what I mean ………….

This is the type of “feast for the eyes” that greets you as you walk through the front door of Nopi.
Salad or artwork?…………… both, for sure!

Roasted Eggplant, Feta, Coriander Pesto, Walnuts ……………..amazing! I’m going to be trying to recreate this one, so be on the lookout! 🙂
Red & Yellow Chicory, Figs & Caramelized Macadamia Nuts ………………… oh my!
Then there’s the bread ……………… gorgeous, huge loaves,  crusty, hearty, fabulous!
 Nopi

After the meal, Basia, the very kind and gracious manager of Nopi, enthusiastically offered to take us on a short tour, so we (and you!) get to take a peek into the kitchen of Nopi, where a team of chef/artists and their assistants were hard at work. I truly felt like the kid in the candy shop!

Did someone mention “the kid in the candy shop”? Who me?

I was so inspired by the whole experience at Nopi, I decided to keep it going by preparing an Ottolenghi recipe for our dinner last night. Josh, our son-in-law, was grilling a deliciously, tender pork tenderloin, and  Honey Roasted Carrots w/ Lemon Tahini Yogurt Sauce sounded like the perfect accompaniment

My daughter snitched one coming out of the oven and described them as “like candy”; a perfect description of the tender golden, honey-glazed carrots. I’m quite certain these will be a family favorite and they’ll always remind us of our wonderful visit to Nopi!

Honey Roasted Carrots W/ Lemon Tahini Yogurt Sauce 

Ingredients for the carrots:
2 ½-3 pounds carrots*, don’t worry, it looks like a lot, but they shrink up quite a bit as they roast, you’ll be quite sorry if you don’t make enough 🙂
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, lightly crushed
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, lightly crushed (or a scant teaspoon ground cumin)
2 teaspoons thyme leaves, roughly chopped (if you don’t have thyme, just omit it, the carrots will still be wonderful).
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoon cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

Ingredients for the yogurt sauce: 
1 ½ tablespoons tahini paste
½ cup Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove
⅛ teaspoon sea salt

Instructions:
1. Heat the oven to 425˚F. Lightly oil two large sheet pans.

2. Peel the carrots, if needed then halve them lengthwise. Cut into quarters if carrots are fat. 

3. Place the carrots, honey, olive oil, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, thyme (if using), a teaspoon of salt and plenty of black pepper in a large bowl or zippered bag. Mix until the carrots are well coated, then spread out over the prepared pans.

4. Roast for about 40 minutes, flipping carrots several times, until tender, golden and glazed.

5. Meanwhile, make the sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk together the tahini, yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt.

6. Once the carrots are done, place on individual plates while still warm or at room temperature. Top with a spoonful of sauce and scatter over the chopped coriander.

Serves 4-6

Note:
* ~ This recipe works better with large, more squat carrots versus long, thin ones. 
Adapted from theguardian



34 thoughts on “Honey Roasted Carrots w/ Lemon Tahini Yogurt Sauce”

  • wow, everything looks so fresh and colourful and vibrant! i nvr heard of chicory..and not even sure how to pronounce it correctly! yes, you have a beautiful daughter!

  • Lucky, lucky, lucky. England is on my bucket list. I am glad you are having such fun with your family. The restaurant looks beautiful on the inside and the food looks spectacular! Looking forward to more London posts.

  • I don’t even know where to start with this post. You and your daughter are both so beautiful, but you also look so happy that you’re radiant! It sounds like you’re having an amazing trip. And as for Ottolenghi – his cookbook is next on my wish list! There’s a sweet potato recipe that I’m absolutely dying to try, but these carrots may have knocked them out of first place.

  • I make honey glazed carrots on the stove frequently but never thought to roast them. Can’t wait to try! Thanks, Chris!
    My kids also grew up living far from their grandparents (though not across the pond) and the efforts my parents made to visit as often as possible paid off in creating a close and loving relationship. How wonderful for your grandchildren that you and your husband can spend frequent quality time with them despite the distance! Grandparents can have such an important impact on the lives of children.
    Every time you enthusiastically write about your London experiences, I want to hop on a plane!!

  • Wow, Chris! Such lovely array of colors, and beautiful photos you’ve shared with us. Sounds and looks like you’re having a wonderful time in London!
    Love your honey roasted carrots, and the yummy sauce is a perfect pairing.
    Thanks for sharing! xo

  • Whatever would we do without Google?
    Your enticing post – and your husband’s spectacular photographs – inspired me to search for the eggplant recipe you mention as I was FAR too impatient to wait for you to come up with your version. It took just seconds and…presto…here is the link to the exact recipe. I have no problem, by the way, with you deleting this comment once you’ve taken down the details so that you have the opportunity to surprise your readers at a later stage. You share your gems so generously with us that I am only too happy to share with you too. Here goes:
    http://www.editer.com/food-drink/ottolenghi/

    • Haha, I might have to put you on the payroll! 🙂 This is wonderful and I cannot wait to try it, if you do it before I do (I might have to wait till I get home from London) PLEASE let me know how it turns out! Thanks again, and you’re right GOOGLE is wonderful!

    • Aaaah you are a sweetheart to reply…though I know that already from your writing and your generousity. I’m absolutely sure that I’ll try this soon and will be sure to let you know when I do. I’m an ex-South African now living in Israel and, as Yotam Ottolenghi is a Jerusalem export, I’m especially drawn to his recipes. I’m sure it’s largely because of him that Middle Eastern cuisine is such a hit the world over. Living here, I’m fortunate enough to be able to pick up all the exotic ingredients he uses like baharat, zaatar, pomegranate syrup, etc in every supermarket in town. Thanks as always for sharing and enjoy your beautiful family.

    • I’m so jealous that you have markets with all these wonderful ingredients! Here in London, there are Middle Eastern Markets close to my daughter’s house but at home, I have to drive quite a ways to get all that fabulous stuff! What an incredibly amazing place to live!
      And yes, I agree Ottolenghi has truly swept the culinary world!

    • Next time you’re in London, you should pop over, as EasyJet frequently offer very special prices. It’s worth it for the eating opportunities alone and the spice markets are a must-see. Enjoy the rest of your trip!

  • I am so envious – Ottolenghi is just the best! Glad you’re having a great time here in my city. One suggestion for an outing hat you may be interested in especially with your granddaughters is to visit the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace – we went last year when we visited Buckingham Palace for it’s summer opening – we tagged on the Royal Mews and it was the highlight of our day. If you do go, it’s worth taking the tour (esp. with the lady guide from Australia – she was fantastic). It’s cars, carriages, horses and the Gold State Coach is wonderful. When we visited there were only a couple of horses there (used to deliver mail between the royal palaces – I’m not joking!!) The others were all at Hampton Court for their summer holiday away from the city – but they may possibly all be back by now. Anyway, it’s a great visit. Best wishes – Lesley

    • Lesleye, I LOVE your city! It’s a wonderful place with so many interesting and fun things to do! Thanks for your tips, we are always looking for fun things to do with the children! Thanks for your well wishes. Chris 🙂

  • First off I have to say you and your hubby are very fortunate to be able to visit London so often. What a nice treat for all.

    Nopi looks wonderful and bursting with healthy colorful dishes – you know you’ll walk out feeling satisfied.

    Lovely recipe. I may have to make these soon. I really like the dressing for the carrots as well, so simple. I use greek yogurt often to blend with other ingredients for a sauce but I’ve never tried it with Tahini. I’ve got some in the frig that I think I’ll join together to test out. Next – I need to purchase some of their books.

    Great recipe and always fun stories. Have a fantastic time.

  • Oh my gosh Chris, you have to be the luckiest person in the world. I have a “Ottolenghi” dish I want to make, but it is still too hot here, but I will have to add your/his dish to my list.

    And yes your daughter is gorgeous, she looks just like you.

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