Alex Guarnaschelli’s Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top Pesto | The Kitchen | Food Network

Alex saves on waste as she cooks carrots root to stem for this sweet and zesty side dish!
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Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top Pesto
Level: Easy
Total: 45 min
Active: 25 min
Yield: 4 to 6 servings


12 to 14 medium carrots with tops (about 1 1/2 pounds)
5 to 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons sweet curry powder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1/2 cup walnut halves
1 cup fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Trim and reserve the carrot tops. In a large bowl, toss the carrots with 2 tablespoons olive oil and the curry powder and salt. Arrange the carrots in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast until tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and roast 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove and cool.

In the food processor, pulse the walnuts a few times to break them up. Add the basil, carrot tops, honey, 3 tablespoons olive oil, a pinch of salt and 1/4 cup cold water. Pulse until combined but not completely smooth. If dry or too chunky, add another tablespoon olive oil or 1 to 2 tablespoons water to loosen. Transfer to a medium bowl. Taste for seasoning.

Transfer the carrots to a serving platter. Stir the vinegar into the pesto and spoon the pesto over the roasted carrots.

Cook’s Note

Carrot tops are grassy and delicious, but their flavor can vary. Taste them to see if they are more bitter or sweet. Trim the tops, then stem and wash them so you are left with 3/4 cup of the more tender parts. The brown sugar on the carrots and the honey in the pesto are there to offset and balance the basil and carrot tops. This is what I call a "nose to tail" vegetable preparation. This makes a great appetizer or snack.

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Alex Guarnaschelli’s Roasted Carrots with Carrot Top Pesto ​| The Kitchen | Food Network

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