Before we dive into today’s recipe, do y’all mind if I ask a quick favor? Forbes is currently accepting nominations for their annual list of the 100 Best Websites for Women, and it would be such a personal dream to show up on it. If you feel so inclined, would you mind taking a moment to hop over to their site and nominate Camille Styles in the comments? Thanks so much for all your support…crossing fingers we make it on! Now, without further ado…
One night a few weeks ago, when I was trying to decide what to do with the massive amount of beautiful carrots that I’d picked up at the farmers’ market, I got the idea for this carrot pesto. It couldn’t be simpler to make — really just a handful of ingredients that I always keep on hand so it can be whipped up at a moment’s notice. Something about the combination of basil, garlic and roasted carrots is so addictive, and I’ve been serving the pesto alongside grilled pork tenderloin, as a spread for the most mouthwatering picnic sandwiches, and (my personal favorite) as a surprising topping to this carrot bruschetta. It’s a double dose of delicious carrots — they’re in the pesto, as well as grilled on top — and the vibrant colors are guaranteed to “wow” guests at any summertime gathering. And the best part is: these can be completely assembled before anyone arrives, so by the time the party rolls around, you can be nibbling these with your guests with a glass of sangria in hand!
Bruschetta with Carrot Pesto
- 1/2 pound carrots, sliced
- extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup classic basil pesto, store-bought or homemade (I like this recipe)
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 crusty baguette, sliced thinly on the bias
- 1 bunch small carrots, multicolored if you can find them
- 1/2 cup feta (I like goat feta, but you can use your fave)
- 6 basil leaves, chiffonade
- course sea salt, like Maldon
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a foil-lined baking sheet, toss sliced carrots with a drizzle of olive oil and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Spread in an even layer, then roast for about 20 minutes, until carrots are soft and caramelized on the edges.
- In a blender or food processor, combine roasted carrots with pesto and red wine vinegar. Pulse until a chunky paste forms (you can make this smoother to your liking.)
- Preheat a grill pan to high heat, and slice the baby carrots into long strips as thinly as possible on the bias (or shave on a mandoline.) Grill the carrot slices for 1 minute per side, then remove to a plate.
- Brush baguette slices with olive oil, then grill 1 minute per side, or until grill marks show. Top each baguette slice with a scoop of carrot pesto, a couple of grilled carrot slices, and a sprinkle of feta, basil ribbons and sea salt. Eat!
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