Winter Carrots — A Sweet Treat!


This is the second winter we’ve stored carrots underground. The winter carrots are definitely the sweetest and tastiest of all. Something about the cold temperatures concentrates the sugars and flavor.

Here is how we do it…

One last planting of Rainbow and Napoli carrots went in the garden behind my house near the end of the summer, where they grew to full-size.DSC_0204

We sold some at market, gave some to shares which ended in December, and used quite a few in our soups and stews.

Before the ground froze, a trench about 18 inches deep was dug alongside the carrot patch. The remaining carrots were dug out and laid in the trench with the greens still on. Enough dirt was sprinkled in around them to hold them upright. A thick layer of salt hay was mounded on top to prevent the ground from freezing underneath.DSC_0207

Yesterday’s temps were in the 40s, and I went out back to replenish my supply. Moving aside the hay, I groped around in the wet earth and pulled them out one at a time. They were still fresh, firm, and rendolent with that unique carrotty fragrance.DSC_0208

Food? Doesn’t look like much until they come inside for a rinse…DSC_0203

Yummy, sweet and gorgeous! I wish you could taste how different these are from the ones you get in the supermarket!

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3 Comments

Filed under Canning and Preserving, Cooking with Fresh Vegetables, CSA Shares, Four Season Gardening

3 responses to “Winter Carrots — A Sweet Treat!

  1. Oh, I so jealous that you have fresh carrots. Normally, I have 4-5 5gal buckets filled with carrots and sand to get us through the winter. Last year’s crop did not do well and I did not get to store any for winter. There is nothing like a fresh winter carrot!

    • maggiemehaffey

      Where do you store those bucketed carrots? Do you have a root cellar? Do you wet the sand and then have to keep them moist? The carrots keep so much better when they can be kept in the ground but this method is rather muddy. At some point we intend to have a proper root cellar here. It will be nice when we can have the luxury of cleaner carrots stored in sand.

      • We stored the buckets in our unheated garage. It is best to keep the sand moist by sprinkling the sand with water every week or so. We are working on an insulated room in the basement to use as a root cellar. Hopefully it will be ready this fall for storing carrots and other veggies.

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