By Priya Kathpal

Season of Carrots!!

Winter is my favourite season especially because the vegetables and fruits look so so beautiful. The colour, the taste everything is different and refreshing. Season brings along with it the one of the most versatile vegetable carrots, the deep red ones which are not so easy to find otherwise.

You wonder why I say versatile?? Well if you belong to a punjabi household like me you’d know that we use it in almost any form. Carrot in salads, cooked vegetables, soups, carrot parathas, carrot halwa, pickles and kanji and my list can go on and on. No wonder they are the second most popular vegetable after potatoes. Did I mention we hate the orange ones (aah, hate is a bit of a strong word but well yaaa we don’t really enjoy those) because it doesn’t give the same taste to so these many options. Not that they are nutritionally any inferior, coming to nutrition, here are some reasons why you should load them up in your diet this season.

  • Seasonal vegetables and fruits are higher on nutrition content, hence these red carrots would give you so much more around this season.
  • The deep red colour in them comes from a substance lycopene which can help the body protect from heart diseases and cancer.
  • Vitamin C and other antioxidants in carrots are excellent to keep your skin healthy. You can not just consume but also apply the carrots as an easy face mask. They actually help in reducing blemishes.
  • They aid the collagen production in the body thus working as an anti ageing tool.
  • One of the highest source of beta carotene that gets converted to Vitamin A in the body. Reduces the macular degeneration and improves eye health.
  • Regular consumption helps building immunity and protects the body from loads of common infections.
  • They help aid digestion, keep you full for longer time and adds up minimum calories. Perfect snack for someone watching out on waistlines.

I like my carrots like this during the cold windy days

Carrot Ginger Soup

100 gms of chopped carrots

1 tsp grated ginger

1 tbsp chopped onions

1 tsp olive oil or butter

Water, salt, black pepper and mixed herbs like parsley, thyme, mint, coriander etc as per your taste.

  1. In a deep bottom pan, heat the oil on medium flame. Saute onions till translucent. Then add ginger keep sautéing till it gives out the aroma.
  2. Now add carrots mix well, add some water and cover for few minutes.
  3. Switch off, let this cool a bit and then blend in a smooth puree. Switch on the flame again, add some more water depending on the kind of consistency you need.
  4. Add salt, pepper and mix well while it cooks on slow flame. Once you are happy with the consistency garnish it with herbs. Taste and serve!!!

Fun Fact –

Cooking the carrots in fat or oils, pureeing or juicing them increases the availability of carotenoids by 600 percent.

Fats also help the absorption of carotenoids into the blood by 1,000 percent, as carotenoids are fat soluble