Delicious and gorgeous on a plate, these caramelized, spicy-sweet carrots are surprisingly easy to make. "Baby carrots are sweeter and more tender than regular ones, and you don't need to peel them," says Chef Alex Stupak of the uber popular Empellon restaurants in N.Y.C. "I leave on the trimmed, tender green tops; it just looks more special."
30 thin baby carrots (2-3 bunches), scrubbed, tops trimmed
2 chipotle peppers (canned in adobo sauce), minced, plus 1 tsp sauce
1 tbsp unsulfured molasses
2 ½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
3 tbsp sesame seeds
Plain Greek yogurt for serving
4 oz. watercress, stems discarded
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss carrots with minced chipotles, molasses, and 2 tbsp olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast carrots for 30-35 min. until tender, crisp, and browned. Transfer carrots to a plate; let cool.
3. Meanwhile, in a skillet, toast sesame seeds over moderate heat, tossing until golden, 3-5 min. Stir in remaining ½ tbsp olive oil and season with salt; let cool.
4. Toss carrots with the 1 tsp adobo sauce.
5. Spread a thick layer of yogurt on a plate; top with carrots. Scatter watercress over carrots. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve with yogurt.