This recipe gave me a chance to finally use up the dried apricot paste I got for Georgian cilantro sauce quite awhile ago. The fact that it was rather desiccated necessitated a change in method: I soaked the apricot in hot water, then drained it (reserving 1/2 c water), then pureed together all the sauce ingredients. I reserved the water to make up for the honey, which I omitted; this sauce was plenty sweet as it was.
I'll definitely make this again, but next time I'll use my intuition more: the thyme was a bit overwhelming, which is no surprise given that the recipe called for 2 tsp dried AND 1 TB fresh. The veggies also took way longer to cook, even though I cut the potatoes into wedges to speed the process. I think next time I'd either (depending on how warm it was outside) a] cover the veggies with foil during the first part of cooking, and overall just cook them longer, or b] parboil the potatoes to give them a head start.
Overall, though, the sweetness of the apricots balanced well with the acidity of the wine, and who doesn't love roasted potatoes? Definite comfort food, with a little bit of a twist. My friend Holly and I had this with a flame-roasted eggplant-chickpea stew and some harissa kale.
Veggies Baked in Apricot Thyme Wine Sauce
(adapted from life currents)
1 c dried apricots, coarsely chopped
2 c boiling water
2 pounds baby red potatoes, scrubbed clean
1 red onion, peeled and cut into wedges
5 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-3 inch pieces
freshly ground pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
1 TB fresh thyme leaves, plus more for garnish
2 TB balsamic vinegar
3 TB olive oil
4 bay leaves
1/2 c dry white wine or vegetable broth
Instructions1. Pour boiling water over apricots and let sit.
2. Preheat oven to 350° F.
3. Place veggies in a large roasting pan, and season with salt and pepper.
4. Drain apricots, reserving 1/2 c liquid. In a blender, combine apricots and that 1/2 c water with remaining ingredients and puree.
5. Pour sauce mixture over veggies, and turn to coat. Cover with foil and bake about 20 minutes, then uncover, stir, and bake for 20-30 minutes more or until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork (see headnote).
6. Transfer to a serving platter, pouring any juices that have accumulated over the top of the veggies. Serve hot or at room temperature. Garnish with additional fresh thyme. Serves about 6.