These Stir-Fried Balsamic and Ginger Glazed Carrots are so incredibly flavorful. After I finished stir-frying them, I tasted one of the carrots and nearly swooned. They are that tasty.
This recipe was developed by Grace Young, James Beard award winner for her wok cookbooks, for the New York Times 2011 series on Well Vegetarian Thanksgiving. Fortunately, you don't have to be a vegetarian to serve these carrots at your holiday table. They go just fine with turkey.
The carrots are first boiled briefly, and then stir-fried until they are "crisp-tender." What's really cool is that the carrots can be made a day in advance, and then reheated in the oven the next day. Perfect for Thanksgiving, right? They'd also be perfect for an elegant dinner party.
I just love how the sauce gives these carrots such a rich color and flavor.
Cooking note: One of the tricks to getting the vegetables to cook evenly, is to cut them into uniform sizes. That's kind of hard with carrots because they are fatter at one end. If you can, buy carrots that are fairly uniform from end to end. Otherwise, cut the fatter ends into slightly shorter pieces.
The other two recipes Grace developed for the series are Mandarin Rice Stuffing with Chestnuts and Shiitake Mushroom and Stir-Fried Brussels Sprouts with Shallots and Sherry. You can find them here on Grace Young's site.
Stir-Fried Balsamic and Ginger Glazed Carrots
1 1/4 tsp salt, divided
1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut on the diagonal into 2 inch pieces (see note above)
1 tablespoon plus 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon dry sherry or shao xing rice wine
2 tsp soy sauce
3/4 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper (I used slightly more)
2 tbsp peanut or canola oil
2 tbsp minced ginger
2 tbsp chopped chives
- Bring 1 1/2 quarts of water to boil in a 3 quart sauce pan. Add 1/2 tsp salt and the carrots to the boiling water. Let the water come back to a full boil (about 5 minutes) and then let boil for 2 more minutes.
- Drain the carrots in a colander.
- In a small bowl, mix the vinegar, sherry/rice wine, and soy sauce.
- In another small bowl, mix the sugar, black pepper, and the rest (3/4 tsp) of the sugar.
- Heat a flat bottomed 14 inch carbon steel wok or 12 inch skillet over medium high heat until a drop of water evaporates when sprinkled on the pan's surface. Drizzle in the oil. Add the ginger and stir for 10 seconds. Add the carrots and stir for one minute, until coated with the oil and ginger.
- Add the balsamic mixture and the sugar mixture, and stir fry the carrots for about 1 minute, until the carrots are crisp tender.
- Remove the carrots to a serving bowl, and sprinkle them with the chives. Serve immediately.
- Make ahead: These can be made a day in advance and then reheated in the oven.
Serves 6 to 8, depending upon how many sides you have.