A new dish, inspired by a Michigan classic…

So, one of the things I love about gardens is that they throw vegetables at you when they want and you have to deal with it. In past years, my peas and carrots were ready about the same time. This year the carrots were a month later than the peas, some were still stunted and most were skinnier, twister and fuglier than those honkers you get at the market. Luckily, nobody knows that once they are chopped up…

In fact my carrots were all by their lonesome harvestwise. Now, I can’t just snack on raw carrots like so many of my friends, thanks to my cross-reactions from birch pollen, which preclude me from enjoying raw bananas, pears, apples and celery as well. Peaches, plums, apricots, cherries, avocados and kiwifruit are straight out, cooked or no. Annoying, but I suppose I should just be happy that something as ubiquitous as wheat or soy is not on that list. Yet I digress, the point is that my oh-so-fugly carrots had to be prepared into a cooked dish that didn’t require much except what I had lying around the kitchen.

One thing I had in the fridge was a can of Vernor’s Ginger Ale, which a friend had tipped me off to the presence of in my local grocery store. The secret to finding America’s oldest surviving soft drink, which is near and dear to any true Michigander heart, is to look with the drink mixers, not the soft drinks. I guess people can be more particular about what goes into their rum n gingers than what their kids quaff at picnics? Dunno, but the barrel-aged, dry, mature flavor of a Vernor’s is something not to be missed.

I had seen Alton Brown make some kind of glazed carrot recipe with ginger ale a while back. Luckily, I had two cans left, so I could sacrifice one to the carrots. Once I got started down this path, I saw the Sriracha and decided to make this even more exciting…

Spicy Vernor’s Glazed Carrots

6 or 7 medium carrots, washed peeled and coarsely chopped
8 oz spinach, chopped
1 can Vernor’s Ginger Ale
1 tbs olive oil
1 tbs Sriracha Hot Sauce
1 tsp ground ginger (jarred)
1 tsp Garam Masala
a few dashes of salt

Sauté the carrots in olive oil, Sriracha, Garam Masala and salt in large skillet on medium high to high for about 3 min. Add Vernor’s, spinach and ginger. Stir and cover until simmering vigorously. Then reduce heat and remove lid, cooking and stirring occasionally until the sauce thickens to syrupy consistency. Took me about 7 more minutes. Easy peasy. Except no peas, but it would probably be great with those too…

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