Carrots are such humble ingredients that too often sit neglected at the bottom of our fridges. This recipe gives carrots a centre stage in this vibrant dish, with a salty sweet glaze and so much texture. Another grain used here is black barley, which cooks to a nutty, bitey texture. Both the barley and carrots can take up to 45 minutes to cook but it’s the perfect recipe to leave cooking and walk away. This recipe is perfect as main but also great to bulk up as a large sharing dish.
4 carrots (purple or orange)
1 tbsp white miso paste
1 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic
1 ¼ cup / 150g black barley
3 cups / 750ml veg stock
1 lemon, zest and juice
Handful of mint, leaves finely chopped
1 tbsp pistachios, finely chopped
1. Heat oven to 200C/180C.
2. Peel the carrots and trim the ends off. Slice each carrot in half lengthways. Arrange cut side down on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
3. Mix the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and brush half of it liberally over carrots.
4. Place in the oven to roast for 25 mins. Flip the carrots over so the cut side is facing up and brush with the marinade. Cook for a further 20-30 minutes until the carrots are caramelised all over and cooked through. Use a cutlery knife to test how soft they are.
5. While the carrots are roasting, prepare the black barley. Heat a pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened and caramelised. Add the garlic and black barley to the pan and fry for 2 minutes, stirring all to coat. Pour over the veg stock and bring to a simmer for 35-40 mins, until cooked but still with a slight chewy bite.
6. Take off the heat and stir through a generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, the chopped mint leaves, lemon zest and juice. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
7. Serve the carrots on top of the barley and scatter over the pistachios. Garnish with extra mint leaves.