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Garlic confit carrots with parmesan cheese and fried sage (credit: Felicia LaLomia)

I’m a bit of a fat hoarder. Anytime I cook bacon, pork, duck or any fatty piece of meat, I store the fat in the fridge. Why? Because it has endless uses. Anytime I’m cooking something simple, I use it as a base. Sauteing onions? Skip the olive oil and use the bacon fat. Toasting up some arborio rice for risotto? Try a little duck fat. 

So when I saw the vibrant orange carrots from Deep Roots Farms, I knew they didn’t need anything fancy. And when I bit into one raw — what’s up doc style — I knew bacon fat would be the perfect compliment. 

I started by melting the bacon fat and pouring the excess into the glass container that would later go in the oven. I halved or quartered the carrots, depending on their size and spread them out. A few cloves of chopped garlic and a sprinkle of salt later, I pop them in a 425 degree oven for 30 minutes. The garlic and the carrots slowly cook in the fat, confit style, infusing each other with more flavor. Once soft and slightly browned, I take them out and shower them with grated parmesan cheese, fried sage, carrot tops and some sage flowers if you’re fancy. 

I’m a fan of keeping fresh local veggies simple, but admittedly, carrots are not my favorite vegetable. But coated in a rich bacon fat, they are scrumptious (try this same recipe with olive oil if you don’t eat meat). The garlic slowly cooks in the oven to release incredible aromas. The parm cheese cuts through some of the richness. The fried sage is fun, crunchy and earthy. The carrot tops add color — and yes, you can use those as an herb or for a pesto, no waste here! Together, it makes a perfect summer side dish, though I just ate all of the carrots right out of the pan.

Garlic confit carrots with Parmesan cheese and fried sage

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch carrots with leafy green top
  • bacon fat rendered from one pound of bacon
  • 4 cloves garlic thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/4 cup fresh sage

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 425. Slice or quarter carrots into similar sizes. Drop in an oven safe pan and pour in bacon fat (or olive oil). You want the fat to come up about a quarter of an inch from the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle in the garlic, making sure to make sure most of it is submerged in the liquid. Roast in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, until the garlic is brown and the carrots are fork tender.
  • Remove from the pan and place on a platter. Add the sage to the leftover bacon fat and return to the oven for 1 to 2 minutes, until translucent. Drain on a paper towel.
  • Top with shredded parmesan, carrot tops, fried sage and edible flowers for some color. Enjoy!
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