glazed carrots with thyme and cayenne

Yeah, I’m still posting Thanksgiving recipes, most of them on loan from my mom, who rules.

I love my Thanksgiving Day routine. Every year at Turkey Lurkey Time, Professor Meowington and I shnuggle on the couch all morning, flipping between parade coverage on CBS and NBC in the hopes of catching lips-synched musical numbers from current Broadway shows.

Then I kiss the cat goodbye, bundle up, and head over to Mom’s to help prepare Thanksgiving dinner. After Handsome Greg finishes a late lunch with his mom, he drives over to my mom’s place to assume his annual position as bartender, potato ricer, table setter, and finally, turkey carver. At that point, Mom and I are completing the last minute tasks – Mom makes the gravy, and I prepare the glazed carrots.

It’s in those last frantic moments of food prep – when all three of us are bustling about Mom’s condo – that I become aware that I’m cooking in someone else’s kitchen. Where are the measuring cups? Wait, the brown sugar is in the fridge? It’s sort of like wearing bowling shoes. It feels unfamiliar, but it generally works fine.

"I love how the lemon cuts through the richness."

And the carrots, along with the rest of the feast, were delicious. The pinch of cayenne could’ve been more generous – I was afraid of overdoing it on the heat, so I used it sparingly. Next time I’ll probably use a shy 1/8 teaspoon. The thyme (from Mom’s hallway herb garden) brought a nice earthiness and tempered the sweetness, and the lemon juice cut through the richness beautifully. This is our permanent Thanksgiving carrot recipe.

Recipe below the fold

Glazed Carrots with Thyme and Cayenne
Adapted from Anne Burrell

1 pound carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
4 tablespoons butter
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 lemon, juiced
3 sprigs thyme, picked
Pinch cayenne pepper
Kosher salt

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat, add the carrots, and sauté for about 10 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for another 5 minutes.

Stir in the brown sugar, lemon juice, thyme, cayenne, and about 1/2 cup of water. Simmer gently until most of the water has reduced and the mixture has thickened to a gooey sauce. Salt to taste.

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