SPICED HEIRLOOM CARROTS with DILL YOGURT

I look up to these women.

My mom (of course). When I get all bunched up, she’ll sing “Don’t worry be happy” in a laborious Jamaican accent — complete with woooo-ooo-ooo-ooo-ing interlude.

Alice Waters. When I first saw her cook an egg in the fire, I just about lost my virginity. She says “Cook simply, engaging all your senses.”

Diane von Furstenberg. I don’t actually want to be her friend or anything. I don’t even really dig her designs, but her point of view and her choice of words are golden. “It’s not all about going to a party. It’s life as a party.” Who talks like that? Diane does.

This dish embodies their combined wisdom and distills what I’m striving for in the kitchen: A place to recenter. Simplicity. The everyday sense of celebration.

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SPICED HEIRLOOM CARROTS with DILL YOGURT

for about 4 servings:
1 ½ cups of plain Greek yogurt
a large bunch of fresh dill, stems discarded, more for garnish
dash of kosher salt
extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1-2 pounds small heirloom carrots, peeled and leaves removed
generous dusting of chipotle chili powder
several dashes of cumin (optional)
kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2 lemon wedges

Combine the yogurt, a large handful of the dill, and salt in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil on medium-high. When the oil is hot, add the carrots and saute, taking care not to overcrowd (or the carrots will release liquid). When the carrots turn golden brown and slightly crispy, dust them with the chipotle powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Add olive oil as needed along with several dill fronds. Squeeze one of the lemon wedges over the carrots. Saute the carrots for several minutes longer to let the flavors come together. Discard the sauteed dill and remove the pan of carrots from heat. Spoon the dill yogurt onto a plate and place the carrots over the yogurt. Garnish with fresh dill and the lemon wedge. Drizzle with olive oil if desired.

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