Thank you Nugget Markets for sponsoring this post!
Okay, the holiday madness is about to sink in. You realize that you’ve been invited to 10 holiday parties, and you’re starting to panic because you have no idea what to make for them. Fear not. I have an easy-to-prepare side dish that you can bring to any gathering.
It’s roasted rainbow carrots that are seasoned with za’atar and ground coriander. Za’atar is a very common Middle Eastern spice blend that’s earthy, nutty with a touch of tang. The blend usually contains thyme, ground sumac and sesame seeds, but the exact spice combination differs between various spice companies. Before I go any further, let’s talk about sumac.
Sumac is another spice you would often see in Middle Eastern cuisine. They’re red berries that grow in bushes that are dried and ground to produce the spice. Their tangy flavor reminds me of lemon juice but without the acid. I’m using ground sumac in my yogurt sauce because the tanginess pairs very well with the slightly sour qualities of yogurt.
I know that these Middle Eastern spices can be difficult to find sometimes, but fortunately, Nugget Markets carry a wide selection of herbs and spices, including za’atar and sumac! Every time I walk into the store, I’m impressed by the variety of spices and sauces that I can find there. But don’t take my word for it—find out for yourself!
From start to finish, this dish took about 30 to 35 minutes to make. It’s so easy to prepare and it adds a lovely color to your holiday table!
COOKING NOTES FOR ZA’ATAR ROASTED CARROTS
- Making a double batch: If you’re cooking for more than 4 people, double the amount of the ingredients for the roasted carrots. The yogurt sauce recipe specified below should be enough for 2 batches of carrots.
- What to do with leftover sumac yogurt sauce: It’s a fantastic dip for vegetables or crackers. The sauce also pairs very well with fritters, like my leek and kohlrabi fritters!
Za’atar Roasted Carrots with Sumac Yogurt Sauce
- 14 to 16 ounces carrots, peeled and tops trimmed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon za’atar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Sumac Yogurt Sauce
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt (see note)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground sumac
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small clove of garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (zest from about 1/2 a lemon)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- chopped pistachios
- chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Position an oven rack in the center position.
- Drizzle the olive oil over the carrots. You can do this inside a large bowl or over the baking sheet. Rub the oil over the carrots to make sure that the surface area of the carrots are covered in oil.
- Mix the za’atar and coriander inside a small bowl. Sprinkle about 2/3 of the spices over the carrots. Then, sprinkle in the salt.
- Line the carrots around the baking sheet. Bake the carrots for 20 to 25 minutes, until they’re fork tender. If you are working with thin carrots (about 1/2 inch around the stem), the carrots will take about 20 minutes to cook. If you are working with carrots that are roughly 1 inch at the stem, they’ll take about 25 to 28 minutes. You can always slice the thicker carrots in half to speed up the cooking time. Rotate the carrots halfway through roasting so that one side doesn’t get too brown.
- While the carrots are roasting, prepare the yogurt sauce by adding all of the ingredients to a bowl and mix well.
- Once the carrots are done, sprinkle the rest of the za’atar and coriander mixture over them. Transfer the carrots to a serving plate. Drizzle the yogurt sauce on top. Sprinkle the chopped pistachios and chopped parsley over the carrots. Serve immediately.