Monday, June 12, 2017

Need a Vacation? Take Your Mouth to Portugal

I love to travel, but sometimes it's just not possible to jump on a plane and leave the world behind for a week or three. That's when I start planning for a foreign vacation right in my own back yard, with rosé chilling in a tub in the dappled sunlight beneath our oak tree and myriad plates of tapas like this one from contributor Jim Dixon of Real Good Food.

Portuguese Marinated Carrots

These are often served with drinks as a petisco, the Portuguese version of a tapa. Cut three or four carrots into roughly half inch slices (I split them lengthwise, then slice crosswise) and cook them in well-salted boiling water for about 10 minutes. You want them just barely tender, not soft.

While the carrots cook, make the marinade by stirring together a tablespoon of honey or sugar with a couple of tablespoons of Katz Sparkling Wine vinegar [regular white wine vinegar works, too], then adding four tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Toast a couple of tablespoons of cumin seeds in a dry skillet for a few minutes until they're aromatic and just starting to brown.

Drain the carrots and add them to the dressing along with the cumin and a couple of cloves of finely chopped garlic. Chop a nice handful of cilantro and add it; add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. If you can, let this sit for an hour or more. It's not traditional, but I like a little red pepper heat, and if you like things hot, add something spicy, like a pinch of cayenne. (In a few weeks I'll have some of Necton's new flor de sal with piri piri chile at my Activspace store, and it's really good sprinkled over the carrots.)

Serve these with good olives and a nice drizzle of extra virgin. If it's sunny, open a cold bottle of vinho verde and pretend you're in the Algarve.

No comments: