Tasty Tuesday

Za’atar Roasted Carrots with Kale, Freekeh and Blood Orange & Maple Dressing

Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen
Tuesday 10th December 2013

 

This afternoon we’re joined once more by Sydney foodie Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen!  Since establishing Arthur Street Kitchen in 2011, Hetty has quickly amassed a cult following for her delicious and super healthy salad lunches, delivered personally by bicycle. In the week that has passed since Hetty’s last Tasty Tuesday post, I’m pleased to announce that her brand new self published cookbook, ‘Community, Recipes from Arthur Street Kitchen‘ has sold out!  That’s 1000 books sold in just one month – CONGRATS HETTY!  Don’t be dismayed if you missed out, a second print run is scheduled for the new year, and Hetty is taking backorders via her website. – Lucy x

Za’atar Roasted Carrots with Kale, Freekeh and Blood Orange & Maple Dressing by Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen.  Photo – Luisa Brimble for The Design Files.

If there was an underdog of the vegetable world, it would most definitely be the carrot. Often found stashed unassumingly at the bottom of the vegetable drawer, it is this very humility and adaptability that makes carrots such an inspiring salad ingredient.

At the heart of almost every Arthur Street Kitchen salad is a core vegetable. From this starting point, this vegetable can venture virtually anywhere in terms of flavour and texture. Carrots, in their splendid simplicity, lend themselves perfectly to spices and strong flavours. Naturally sweet with a wonderfully robust texture, I love roasting or barbecuing carrots until they take on a charred edge.

This salad is an Arthur Street Kitchen favourite. I’ve heard it described as ‘the perfect salad’, which is a very big call, even in my book! However, I can see (and taste) why it’s such a crowd pleaser. This salad is all about contrasts of flavour and texture – the za’atar gives the carrots a beautiful grassy nuttiness, the kale adds an earthy freshness, and the blood orange maple dressing delivers a gentle, citrusy sweet overtone to the dish.

An important part of cooking from my cookbook Community, Recipes from Arthur Street Kitchen, is learning to cook seasonally. Hence, be brave with substituting ingredients when necessary. For example, in this recipe, when blood oranges are not available, substitute with the juice of one orange and one ruby grapefruit, use farro or spelt instead of freekeh and replace the kale with cavolo nero, silverbeet, chard, baby spinach leaves or even raw watercress. The result will undoubtedly be different, but it’s so exciting to see how the dish evolves from a little bit of courage and experimentation.

Ingredients

10 medium (about 1.2kg) carrots, peeled
3-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 tbsp za’atar
Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
1 cup freekeh grains, rinsed well
1 bunch kale, washed and stems removed
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cup parsley, roughly chopped
1⁄2 cup hazelnuts, roasted, skinned, and roughly crushed
Sea salt and black pepper

Blood orange dressing

2 blood oranges, juiced
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup dill, finely chopped
Sea salt and black pepper

Ingredients for Za’atar Roasted Carrots with Kale, Freekeh and Blood Orange & Maple Dressing by Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen.  Photo – Luisa Brimble for The Design Files.

Method (Serves 4-6 as a main meal or 6-8 as a side dish)

To make the dressing, combine the orange juice and maple syrup with the garlic, vinegar, dill and olive oil and whisk together well. Taste and adjust seasoning until you get a gentle, sweet sauce.

Preheat oven to 220 degrees celsius. Quarter the carrots lengthways, and then slice into 6cm fingers (or whatever shape you like). Place on a baking tray, coat in 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and place in the oven to roast. After about 15 minutes, add the sliced red onions to the baking tray and put back into the oven. In total, the carrots should take about 25-30 minutes. When starting to crisp and turn golden, remove from oven and sprinkle over the za’atar and lemon juice.

Roasted Carrots by Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen.  Photo – Luisa Brimble for The Design Files.

Add the rinsed freekeh to a large pot of well salted water. Bring to the boil, and then simmer on medium heat until the grains are tender. Drain.

Roughly tear the kale leaves. In a large fry-pan, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the crushed garlic and kale leaves. Season well with a big pinch of salt and pepper and cook until the leaves have wilted.

Combine the carrots and red onion with the kale, freekeh and half the chopped parsley. Pour over the blood orange and maple dressing and gently mix. Sprinkle over the hazelnuts and remaining parsley.

Massive thanks to Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen for sharing her fabulous seasonal salad ideas with us this month, and to Luisa Brimble for the beautiful pics!  Hetty’s gorgeous new self published cookbook, ‘Community, Recipes from Arthur Street Kitchen‘ has just sold out (congrats Hetty!) however, don’t be dismayed if you missed out!  A second print run is scheduled for the new year, and Hetty is taking backorders via her online store.  Some stockists may also still have a few if you’re quick.

Hetty dishes up! Photo – Luisa Brimble for The Design Files.

Hetty McKinnon of Arthur Street Kitchen
Tuesday 10th December 2013

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