When I poached vegetables for the first time last week the flavours were built up with wine, onions, celery, and bay leaves. It was simply delicious and the vegetables soaked up all of those sweet flavours, especially the wine!
I thought about it and wondered if the same would happen if you add spices to the poaching liquid. Carrots are the perfect match to strong spices so I decided to just use carrots this time, for spices to match carrots it simply had to be cumin and coriander.
The carrots are great poached because they keep some bite so you’re not eating soggy veg! This would make a perfect side dish for any occasion and you could play around with different spices. For example I threw in a sprinkle of garam masala which tasted delicious but you could also try some turmeric, cayenne pepper and maybe even some split cardamom pods!
For this recipe I used 3 large carrots, 1.2 litres of vegetable stock, 1 tablespoon cumin seeds, 1 heaped teaspoon ground coriander and a sprinkle of garam masala.
There is no need to chop the carrots up small, I simple scrubbed them clean then halved them. Bring the poaching liquid with the spices in it to the boil and add the carrots, turn down to a simmer and cook for 8 mins. Serve with a few ladles of the stock and reserve the rest to add to soups, sauces or freeze to poach carrots in at a later date.
If you have small or thin carrots you could definitely keep them whole, even leave some of those greens on! You could poach ingredients like fennel and shallots in with the carrots, just add the carrots first then after around 3 minutes add the fennel and shallots and cook for a further 5 minutes.
What spices would you add to a poaching liquid?