Operation Carrots: 20 pounds of Carrots, One Euro Vegetable Peeler, and a Nifty Food Processor
My family buys in bulk as we live in a rural area and are thrifty. When we go to a Whole Foods, we get a case, which gives us a 10% discount. When we order from Azure Standard, we order bulk. We went to Whole Foods and got a 40 lb. box of New Zealand apples and one of grapes--both on sale and with extra case discounts of 10%. When we returned home, we opened the fridge and realized that in order to make room for the apples, we had to do up the 20 lbs. of carrots that were within.
Bob and I then worked up twenty pounds of carrots. We cleaned and cut the ends off of the carrots with our Rada paring knife. I love Rada knives. Rada makes phenomenal and inexpensive paring and tomato knives and will replace their knives for no extra charge if they break. I have used many knives in my culinary history, and I would put Rada against Chicago Cutlery or German-forged knives for their quality and for their price.
Bob and I then took turns peeling the batch with our Euro vegetable peeler. I am left-handed, and the fact that I think with the right side of my brain makes most peelers obsolete. However, in the last couple of years, we discovered the Euro vegetable peeler (organ music please). I really, really like these peelers because they glide across the veggies and take off larger slices than their counterparts. My only complaint about our peeler is that in the midst of peeling 20 lbs. of carrots, the blade will fly off the peeler and have to be reinstalled. I think that the poor peeler just gets overwhelmed, and that we should not hold this weakness against the poor fellow.
After the carrots’ ends and tops were cut off with a Rada paring knife, peeled with a Euro vegetable peeler, and washed, we processed the carrots into coins. For this procedure, we used our Hamilton Beach food processer from Amazon.com, which we snatched up for less than $40 and have been immensely pleased with. We like this processor because it will slice, chop, and puree and works unbelievably well for much less than other available processors.
We then blanched the coined carrots for three minutes in boiling purified water. After the carrots were blanched, we cooled the coins in purified water, strained them, and then packed them into quart bags in 3 cup increments. We use the carrots in stir-fries and carrot halvah—simply pulling them out of the freezer and throwing them in with some rice and other veggies or milk , butter, and sugar— making our meal and dessert preparation easier and faster. Operation Carrot, as our preparation project has become known, was not only a battle won against the ravages of impending waste but a victory in food preparation as it has saved us time and given us quick and healthy organic food.