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Carrot Tzimmes

Carrot tzimmes

(Israeli Jewish carrots braised with honey)

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Tzimmes, or tsimmes, is a Jewish side dish that is a traditional part of a Rosh Hashanah meal. Carrot, or mehren, tzimmes is a favorite, slowly simmered with honey to make a sweet dish symbolizing a sweet new year.

There are endless variations on the basic tzimmes recipe. Some mix carrots and sweet potatoes. Others add dried fruits. Still others braise the carrots with a nice brisket.

4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch rounds -- 2 pounds
  • Water -- to cover
  • Honey -- 1/2 cup
  • Lemon juice -- 1 tablespoon
  • Cinnamon (optional) -- 1 teaspoon
  • Salt -- to taste
  • Butter -- 2 to 3 tablespoons

Method

  1. Add the carrots, water, honey, lemon juice, cinnamon and salt to a large saucepan and stir together.
  2. Set the saucepan over medium-high flame and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Remove cover and increase heat to medium-high. Boil to cook down the liquid until it forms a glaze on the carrots. Stir in the butter, adjust seasoning and serve.

Tzimmes Variations

  • Meat tzimmes: Preheat oven to 325°F. Brown a 2 to 3 pound brisket in a pot or pan big enough to hold it over medium-high flame in a few tablespoons of oil. Set the brisket aside and saute a chopped onion in the same pot or pan until translucent and cooked through. Add the sauteed onion to the bottom of a casserole dish or roasting pan, top them with the brisket and surround the meat with 1 pound of chopped carrots and 1 pound of peeled sweet or regular potatoes cut into chunks. Mix 3 cups of water, the honey, lemon juice, cinnamon, salt and some pepper together and pour over the brisket and carrots. Cover and bake without stirring until the meat is tender, 2 to 3 hours. Let rest, covered loosely for 15 to 20 minutes before service. Slice the brisket and serve with the vegetables and pan juices.
  • Tzimmes with potatoes: Substitute half of the carrots with 1 pound of peeled sweet or regular potatoes, cut into chunks.
  • Balkan-style tzimmes: Make a simple dried fruit compote sweetened with honey.
  • Other tzimmes variations: Adjust the amount of honey to suit your taste. Add 1/2 cup of raisins, currants or prunes. Substitute orange juice for some of the water if you like.

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