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Roasted Carrot Dip with Hazelnut and Raisin Topping and They Don’t Have This in China

Roasted carrot dip was the hit of the happy hour and the bagel bombs-well, they were the bomb. Last week I had a few ladies over for happy hour. That’s what happens when Manservant is gone for a long time. I get bored and need to channel my energy and so I decided to invite over a few bloggers that I’ve never met before, with one exception. Truthfully this could have been a disastrous experience, after all I’ve heard it said that bloggers can be competitive and petty. Well, I’m not in that group and either were these ladies! We had a great time and I hope we do it again soon.

I kind of went overboard with food. When Manservant is gone I don’t cook very often, so lots of things sounded good to me. And knowing Manservant would be arriving the next day I knew he would be happy with any leftovers. Yes, Manservant was gone for three weeks, not counting the two night hiatus to change his clothes and get fresh ones; thanks to Mrs. How I Cook. He ended up having a fun time with Alex OdieSan and took so many photos that I will never get to see. Yes, he lost his phone which didn’t bode well for communicating. Seems the cab driver left a bit too quickly.

In any case he regaled me with stories about my boy and how proud he is of him and how well he seems to have settled in. His Chinese is great, (like he would know) and he is an expert on street food and of course, wine. His roommates are smart and good kids, and he has a red couch in his living room and a purple one in his bedroom in front of the 10 foot window, and he found the couch on Craig’s List. After walking up six flights of stairs he learned our son lives in the penthouse. But I already knew that. Everyone knows him wherever he goes and though I probably might not think that he lived in a great neighborhood, he assured me he does and that he actually has a very good address, though the water pressure isn’t the best.

They had a great time getting their skin exfoliated and massaged and had a 16 course meal with Manservant’s former business partner, who Alex was able to speak with just fine. They each had lots of new shirts made, but especially Alex, who said all he needed was a white one. Manservant asked how many he had and he replied none, which led to about 12 additional shirts and the story about Manservant locating his past tailor in a giant building, that Alex thought he would be permanently lost in. After getting off the elevator, the long  thought to be lost tailor, spied my husband walking down the hall and recognized him after 7 years and then she finally got to meet the boy she had made a prom tux for so many years ago! So now you know what I know and maybe soon I will get some photos from Alex’s camera.

And back to food… I made a great cracked pepper, warm onion dip with semi homemade French onion potato chips and this roasted carrot dip, that I loved. We also had wine. You did know that, right? And I baked bagel bombs and Earl Grey chocolate chip cookies. Karen brought smoked salmon that she smoked and Diane brought a wide assortment of home made jams. And we all brought lots of conversation. A good time was had by all! Check out their links down below.

Carrots may sound weird as an appetizer, but they have been showing up on a lot of restaurant menus lately. Roasted carrots become sweet and earthy and oh so good. They are perfect as a side dish and as leftovers, made a great topping on my sumac chicken. The hazelnut raisin topping is superb and lush. Try them and impress your friends. I served them with za’atar pizza that I buy at a small restaurant called Amira. I order 4 at a time and then cut them into pieces and freeze them. I adore these, so if you live in Denver put this Lebanese place on your radar screen.

Roasted Carrot Dip Platter
From: Sunset
Serves: 6-8 as an appetizer
1 lb medium carrots (I used all colors) Peel and slice on the diagonal 1/4″ thick and 2-3″ long
1/2 t salt
1 1/2 t sumac
zest from 1/2 a lemon
1 t ground coriander
1/2 t ground cumin

2 T olive oil
2 T butter
1/4 c golden raisins
1/2 c coarsely chopped hazelnuts
1 t chopped fresh thyme, divided

1 1/2 c plain whole milk Greek yogurt or labneh or even hummus
1 T chopped Italian parsley
Za’atar pitas for serving or toasted plain pitas-no worries here!

Preheat oven to 450. In a large bowl, combine, 1/2 t salt, 1 t sumac, lemon zest, coriander, cumin and oil. Add carrots and toss to coat. Spread evenly on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast carrots, stirring once, until browned at edges, about 15-18 minutes. I kept mine in a little longer because I like them really crisp. Let cool.

Cook butter in a medium frying pan over medium low heat, stirring occasionally until browned, about 5-8 minutes. It will sputter and then get quiet. This is how you kind of know it is about browned. Add raisins, nuts, 1/2 t thyme and 1/2 t sumac, Cook while stirring, until raisins puff, about 45-60 seconds. Let cool.

If using yogurt or labneh, combine in a small bowl with 1/4 t salt and remaining 1/2 t of thyme. I substituted more za’atar to taste. This is up to you! Spread on a platter. Now toss carrots and nuts and parsley together. Arrange over yogurt or hummus mixture. Serve with pita chips. Salt to taste.

More to Try:
5 Simple One Bite Appetizers
Buttery Garlic Parmesan Potato Chips
Saigon Crunch Chex Mix
Onion Dip
Cranberry Chipotle Wonton Cups

Other Blogger Links:
Cooking on the Ranch
Savoury Table
The Spice Train
Canning and Cooking at Home


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  • Reply
    Karen Harris
    November 9, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Oh so delicious! Loved these, and the company. Glad you gave up the recipe. My girl will love them.

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 10, 2015 at 2:41 am

      Thanks Karen! It was a lot of fun! I just made the recipe, but thank Sunset for it! Go girls!

  • Reply
    Cheri Savory Spoon
    November 9, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    Hi Abbe, sumac and za atar are some of my favorite spices, love this recipe.

  • Reply
    Kitchen Riffs
    November 9, 2015 at 11:43 pm

    Always fun to read updates on your kids! Sounds like Manservant had a great visit. And sounds like your blogger friends had a super feast — this carrot dish is outstanding. Love roasted carrots — so this recipe is definitely my kind of food. Thanks!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 10, 2015 at 2:43 am

      Thanks John. So nice to hear! This turned out great!

  • Reply
    Tricia Buice
    November 10, 2015 at 12:42 am

    So glad your husband got home safe and sound. And it does sound like he missed a lot! Glad you son is well too – hope you get to go visit soon. Great dish and I hope you will share more about your blogger-get-together!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 10, 2015 at 2:44 am

      Well, he did. But I think I missed more! Will do Tricia! Wish you were here to join us!

  • Reply
    Anna and Liz Recipes
    November 10, 2015 at 1:14 am

    HI Abbe! This looks so delicious; you had us when you mentioned carrots! Meeting other bloggers sounds like fun! Noticed your list of extra credit reading, would love to be added on to your list of friends.
    You must be so proud of your son, living, and working while learning another culture and mastering their language. What a wonderful time for you and your family! 🙂

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 10, 2015 at 2:45 am

      Will do Anna and Liz. I am proud, but miss him and my daughter who is in Philly so much. At least I get to see her more often!

  • Reply
    Holly @
    November 10, 2015 at 1:42 am

    Looks like it was a great get-together. Food and friends always seem to mix well, especially when the food is as good as yours!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 10, 2015 at 2:45 am

      We missed you Holly. Hope the heater got fixed.

  • Reply
    La Table De Nana
    November 10, 2015 at 3:33 am

    You are so interesting:)
    Your boy is handsome mama..gosh your husband travels a lot..yikes lost his phone?
    You know lots of bloggers..will check out the links have never cooked with sumac..will roasted carrots.

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:24 am

      Awww. Thanks Monique! I miss his smile every day! Yes he travels way more than either of us like! I don't know that many, but it is fun to meet new ones!

  • Reply
    nicole branan
    November 10, 2015 at 4:13 am

    I loved these delicious carrots! Well, I loved everything, including the great company! 🙂

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:24 am

      It was fun Nicole and I hope we can do it again!

  • Reply
    Angie Schneider
    November 10, 2015 at 8:40 am

    Sounds like that your son is having a great time in China. Your roasted carrot dip platter looks so inviting!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:25 am

      I know you would love these Angie! He is having a great time!

  • Reply
    Amy (Savory Moments)
    November 10, 2015 at 11:31 am

    It's so cool that you have other bloggers near you to get together with! This carrot dish looks so exotic and really tasty!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:26 am

      It is fun Amy! But I love making new friends of all sorts! Really it isn't that exotic, but a few new spices make it fun!

  • Reply
    Liz Berg
    November 10, 2015 at 12:34 pm

    I love meeting new bloggers! Wish I was in town to crash your party and have some of your gorgeous carrot dip! Your son is so handsome (I knew that already) and glad he and your hubby had such a nice, productive visit!

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:28 am

      Any time you want to crash, you know where I am! Thanks Liz! It was productive and fun and I missed it!

  • Reply
    November 10, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    Love this combination!

  • Reply
    November 11, 2015 at 3:17 am

    I love the idea of different colors carrot in this dish and I never thought in adding sumac…thanks for the inspiration Abbe.
    Have a wonderful week 🙂

  • Reply
    Carol at Wild Goose Mama
    November 11, 2015 at 10:31 pm

    Dang I would have loved to come to the party. This looks delish. Sumac? Gosh I only know that as a landscaping tree. You do cook fascinating dishes. Always enjoy your family—-not your stay at home four square family for sure. Lol

    • Reply
      Abbe Odenwalder
      November 16, 2015 at 5:33 am

      Boring we are not! Except for maybe me manning the fort. Come here and educate me about tea, and I'll give you some new spice in your life!

  • Reply
    Caroline Taylor
    November 12, 2015 at 4:35 pm

    This sounds really good, something a bit unusual for a dinner party which is always good news!

  • Reply
    SavoringTime in the Kitchen
    November 12, 2015 at 8:05 pm

    I bought some sumac at Penzeys knowing I wanted to try using in one day but didn't have a recipe in mind. Now I do!! I love roasted carrots and can't wait to try these. Your son is a handsome young man! I know several people whose sons have lived in China. What a great experience and his apartment sounds great!

  • Reply
    Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch)
    November 16, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    Yes you did go overboard on food and I was most certainly glad to be on the receiving end of that one. And throw in bottle of Justin Isoseles and you threw a Food and Wine Magazine worthy party. A fabulous spread Abbe and so beautifully displayed. I think you know by now that these carrots were my absolute favorite thing. And you know that's a glowing review when those bagel bombs and cookies were in the running. I'm going to make this for my Thanksgiving appetizer. Great recipe with such wonderful flavors. And what a handsome young man! I believe I see a resemblance between you and him.

    Thanks for inviting us over.

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