Each month, the North Country Region of Eat Smart NY chooses a locally-grown fruit or vegetable to feature as its “Harvest of the Month” — providing nutritional information about that ingredient, as well as tips for purchasing or preparing it. The Harvests of the Month for March 2018 are carrots!
Why They’re So Great
A half-cup of carrots (whether raw or cooked) is an excellent source of vitamin A, which contributes to good eye health, fights infection, and keeps your skin healthy. How much is a half-cup? It’s about the size of one medium carrot or four baby carrots.
Carrots are also rich in vitamin C, which helps boost our body’s immune system. They have even been proven to lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure, which means they play a role in protecting your heart health!
When shopping for carrots, look for smooth, firm, and well-shaped carrots with an even color.
Put your carrots in a plastic bag and keep them in the refrigerator — they will stay fresh there for up to two weeks. If you buy carrots with green tops still attached, cut off the tops before refrigerating.
Healthy Serving Ideas
Carrots can be eaten whole, sliced into sticks, chopped, shredded, or cooked! Frozen and canned carrots are just as nutritious as fresh ones.
Try slicing your carrots into sticks and dipping them in hummus or a light dressing for a healthy snack. You could also add shredded carrot to coleslaw for extra color and flavor, or boil them with potatoes and mash them together for a sweet twist on traditional mashed potatoes!
Try out this recipe to make an “Glazed Carrots” as a side dish for your family!
1. Wash and peel the carrots. Cut in half lengthwise, then cut into 1 inch pieces.
2. Melt the margarine in a heavy saucepan on low heat.
3. Add the carrots. Stir to coat them with the margarine.
4. Add the water, salt, and pepper.
5. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes until tender.
6. Drain the water.
7. Add the sugar.
8. Cover the pan.
9. Shake the pan back and forth on the burner for 1 minute.
10. Cook for 1 more minute, until the carrots are glazed but not brown.
2 tablespoons margarine
1½ pounds of carrot
1 cup water
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons sugar or substitute
2 teaspoons of real maple syrup