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Tastes & Travels

Roasted Carrots, Chickpeas and Onions with Awaze Sauce

Awaze is a versatile sauce hailing from Ethiopia, where it’s used on just about everything. You  can use it as a finishing sauce, as I do here, or brush it on just about any protein (fish, poultry,  tofu or tempeh) before grilling, sauteing or roasting. In Ethiopia, they use local honey wine to  make this sauce, but here we can use a combo of red wine and honey to replicate its sweet but  tannic flavor. This dish is perfect and simple as is, but feel free to scatter some fresh herbs  (especially cilantro) or toasted nuts, such as almonds, over top.

Roasted Carrots, Chickpeas and Onions with Awaze Sauce

Serves 4 

Carrots and Onions: 

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed 
  • 1 pound medium carrots, peeled, ends trimmed 
  • 1 large red onion, cut into 1 inch chunks 
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
  • 1 tablespoon berbere spice blend (see recipe below) 
  • Kosher salt 

Awaze Sauce: 

  • 1/4 cup red wine 
  • 2 tablespoons honey 
  • 5 tablespoons berbere spice blend 
  • Kosher salt 
  1. For the carrots and onions, preheat the oven to 400 degrees with a rimmed baking sheet on the  bottom rack. To cut the carrots, hold a carrot at a 45 degree angle to your cutting board and  slice a 1 inch chunk off, rotate the carrot a quarter turn and slice off another chunk. Continue to  the end of the carrot and cut all of the carrots this way. (This is a “roll cut”, it’s a good technique  for cutting long vegetables to give lots of surface area for browning.) Toss the carrots in a large  bowl with the red onions, olive oil, berbere spice blend and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Spread on  the preheated baking sheet and roast until tender and nicely caramelized, about 25 minutes,  stirring once halfway through.
  2. While the carrots and onions roast, make the awaze sauce. In a small bowl, stir together the red  wine and honey. Stir in the berbere spice blend and 1 teaspoon salt. The sauce should be thick  but still able to drizzle. (This makes more awaze than you’ll need for the recipe, but it keeps for  at least a week in the fridge). 
  3. Mound the carrots and onions on a serving platter and drizzle with a few tablespoons of awaze  sauce. Serve warm. 

Berbere Spice Blend 

This spice blend will keep, tightly sealed, in your pantry for several months. For longer storate,  keep in the freezer. 

Makes about 1/2 cup 

  • 1/4 cup ground New Mexico chile 
  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder 
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated onion 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground clove 
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
  1. Combine all of the spices in a small skillet.
  2. Toast over medium low heat, stirring constantly, until  fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  3. Let cool completely.

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