Chef's Recipes

Peter Gilmore's roasted carrots with feta, almonds and sherry caramel

The interplay of texture with crunchy almonds, sweet roasted carrots and creamy feta is simply delicious.

By Peter Gilmore
  • Serves 8
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 45 mins cooking
Peter Gilmore's roasted carrots with feta, almonds and sherry caramel
Peter Gilmore's roasted carrots with feta, almonds and sherry caramel

"The key to the success of this salad, my all-time favourite, is the sherry caramel - it's luscious, sweet and tart all at once," says Gilmore. "The interplay of texture with crunchy almonds, sweet roasted carrots and creamy feta is simply delicious." This recipe makes more sherry caramel than you need, but it keeps well (for at least a month covered and refrigerated); use it to dress other salads and roasted vegetables.

Ingredients

  • 12 long carrots (1.6kg), peeled
  • 200 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 200 gm natural almonds, split in half with a small knife along the seam
  • 300 gm Meredith goat’s feta, or sheep’s milk feta
  • 25 gm puffed amaranth (see note) (½ cup)
  • ¼ cup edible flowers (see note)
Sherry caramel
  • 150 gm caster sugar
  • 375 ml oloroso sherry (1½ cups)
  • 180 ml sherry vinegar

Method

Main
  • 1
    For sherry caramel, stir sugar and 300ml
    sherry in a deep saucepan over medium heat
    until sugar dissolves (1-2 minutes). Increase
    heat to high and cook without stirring until a
    medium-dark caramel forms or mixture reaches
    160C on a sugar thermometer (12-15 minutes).
    Add remaining sherry (be careful, hot caramel
    will spit), then stir while returning to the boil.
    Remove from heat, add sherry vinegar and stir
    thoroughly with a whisk. Cool completely before
    using; it should have the consistency of golden
    syrup once cooled. Makes 1½ cups.
  • 2
    Preheat oven to 180C. Boil carrots briefly until
    lightly cooked (2 minutes). Drain, toss with 50ml
    extra-virgin olive oil, season and roast on an oven
    tray lined with baking paper or on a silicone tray
    until soft (25-30 minutes). Cool completely
    (20-30 minutes).
  • 3
    Roast almonds on an oven tray lined with
    baking paper or on a silicone tray until golden
    brown (3-4 minutes). Cool completely.
  • 4
    Crumble feta over a platter. Cut carrots into
    3cm pieces and toss in a bowl with 50ml
    extra-virgin olive oil, season to taste, and scatter
    carrots over the feta. Dress almonds in 50ml
    extra-virgin olive oil, season to taste and scatter
    on top of carrots. Scatter with puffed amaranth,
    drizzle with 2 tbsp sherry caramel, or to taste,
    then drizzle with remaining oil, garnish with
    flowers and serve.

Notes

Puffed amaranth is available from health-food shops. Edible flowers are available from select delicatessens, greengrocers and farmers’ markets. Drink suggestion by Russ Mills & Amanda Yallop