Did Jeremy Fox just create an entire tasting menu from carrots?
Pretty much. What’s more, the dinner sold out and, judging by these pictures, we can see why!
Back in 2009 the chef and Phaidon author Daniel Patterson wrote a piece for the Financial Times headlined, 'Carrots are the new caviar'. It was a provocative article, arguing that, for many chefs, once-precious ingredients are now on an equal footing with more lowly produce.
A decade on, Patterson’s once-heretical food hierachy seems to be gaining increased acceptance. A couple of days ago fellow Californian chef and Phaidon author Jeremy Fox cooked an entire tasting menu from carrots at his Rustic Canyon restaurant.
“It was five courses plus amuse and petit fours,” Fox explained over Instagram, “each course highlighting a specific carrot and a specific cooking method, each paired with a special glass of wine or non-alcoholic pairing.”
There was a red kyoto carrot carpaccio, with oca, caracara, bacon avocado, almond butter and marigold; pickled carrot ssam, red carrot mustard and shiso. Enough carrots yet? No? OK here's what else he did: Thumblina carrots steamed over herbs, carrot top flatbread, salsa verde and mimolette; and black nebula carrots braised in their juice, with apricot amba, chèvre, lime mint and za’atar, among other treats.
It’s a pretty amazing selection, and all the more impressive when you discover that the dinner completely sold out.
Emboldened by his carrot success, it's probably safe to expect plenty of further vegetable-focussed plans for the next few months. Keep an eye on his Instagram here, and, Jeremy if you’re reading, we’re rooting for you! (sorry).
For more on Jeremy’s food get On Vegetables; for more produce-focussed cooking get The Garden Chef here.