It was late May,  really not that long ago.  The low gray sky and heavy clouds were barely filtering the sun on a cold wet Saturday morning. It was another dreary visit to the Farmers Market on the wettest recorded Spring in 70 years.

I love potatoes and turnips, and I arrived expecting to see their broad palette of browns, muted reds, and pale yellows which always follow a drawn out winter and cold Spring. But this visit gave me my first  hint of color, and with it the fruit and veggies yet to come. The artist’s hope can reside in color!  On this visit, the color was orange, and the produce was baby carrots.

Spring, although late, had finally arrived.  Soon I would be able to slather butter on my radish baguettes and anticipate that first bite of my fresh tomato tart.

I scooped up several bunches of baby carrots.  I love the incredible sweetness, the tenderness with just a little crunch, and the versatility of this earliest Spring veggie. You can eat it raw as a snack or in salads, or barely cook it as an addition to any dish.

I wanted to celebrate these carrots as the harbinger of a long awaited Spring with a simple recipe.  I have made this so often I no longer use a recipe: a splash here and a pinch there. This preparation lets the carrots shine in color and flavor. I sauteed them gently in butter, and when barely tender stir in a little sugar and balsamic vinegar to taste. For an added contrast in flavor and color I toss in chopped chives at the end, and viola! A delicious Spring welcome.

Balsamic Glazed Baby Carrots

1 lb baby carrots, washed and trimmed
1 1/2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoons sugar ( or to taste)
1 1/2 Tablespoons Balsamic (or to taste)
2 Tablespoons chopped chives or sauteed  shallots

Melt butter in heavy saucepan over medium heat.

Add carrots.

Saute until tender-crisp.

Stir in remaining ingredients.

Serve!

I have substituted honey for sugar, shallots or onions for chives, and apple cider vinegar for Balsamic and it’s always delicious! Also good cold in salads!