Lemon Carrot Confiture

Third Place Winner at the Orange County Fair!

Lemon Carrot Confiture

I apologize for my tardiness in bringing you this award-winning preserve. Life has been out-of-control busy since this blog (that’s me!) won the “Best of Show” prize at the 2012 Orange County Fair last summer. My genre-busting, step-by-step treatise on Mussels and Chorizo scored a big win with the judges — my life has not been the same since. I thought I knew “busy” but nothing can ever really prepare one for the schedule it takes to compete for and then win such an award.

It takes years of training just to get your blogging skills to level required to get yourself noticed at the neighborhood and city food blog competitions.  A win there doesn’t buy you any rest as the pressure to keep  on winning pushes you forward with more writing, cooking, and photography so you can win the sectionals and then regional blogging competitions.  Talk about stamina!  But then, for the lucky few, its on to “The Counties.”

Once there excitement begins with an invitation to the OC Fair Culinary Competition Nominee Luncheon. There I saw 2011 winner Marilyn Johnson of Pink Martinis and Pearls for the first time. Her 2011 Best of Show triumph certainly made her the one to beat in 2012. We are now fast friends, but at this luncheon I couldn’t even get near her due to her security detail and the oh-so-clingy press who hung on her every cookie-decorating word.

Lemon Carrot Confiture

Following the Nominees Luncheon there were the numerous fittings with top designers. Ultimately my stylist Brad Goreski and I decided on a pair of simple pair of blue denim jeans and a grey polo shirt which was sent over at the last minute by the fine people at Hugo Boss. The shirt was a great choice as even the mavens over at Fashion Police could find no fault with it.

After the actual ceremony there was the winners press stand-up before we partied all night at the Governor’s Ball.  The only low point of the evening was being turned away at the door of the Saveur Magazine after-party at the Livestock Pavilion.  I’m used to not getting any love from Saveur so instead I took my big blue ribbon and my entourage and crashed the Everyday With Rachel Ray after-party. (They’ll let anybody in.)

Lemon Carrot Confiture

Which brings us to this lovely albeit tardy Lemon Carrot Confiture…

My post-Best-of-Show life now includes the high-stress demands of producing my own Reality Show and captaining a social media empire that includes a staggering 81 “likes” on Facebook  and a full 313 “followers” on Twitter. Not bad for only blogging three years!  So much to do and now I need staff to do it. How on earth do other food blog superstars manage their lives and function without personal assistants to take care of life’s details? (Note to self, have my people call Deb, Joy, and Ree and ask them this.)

Being très busy before Fair season even started made it necessary for me to choose a simple to make Preserved Food: Jams, Conserves, Preserves & Marmalade submission item.  Food blogging is fun but nothing connects you more to the excitement of the fair than actual entering a food item into competition.

Orange County really takes its jams and jellies seriously as hundreds of jars get entered each year.  There are seven categories: stone fruit, strawberry (so popular they they had to give it its own category!), other berries, mixed fruit, conserves and preserves, marmalades, and finally, other.  Jars for days and each one must get tasted by the judges and somehow ordered according to ‘best’.

And as exiting as my win for Mussels and Chorizo was and as life-changing as the aftermath became, I am more proud of the Third Place ribbon this confiture took home the “Other” category. The Counties had spoken and I made the third best Other in all of Orange County!

Just wow.

Lemon Carrot Confiture


Lemon Carrot ConfitureLemon Carrot Confiture
Lemon Carrot ConfitureLemon Carrot Confiture


Lemon Carrot Confiture requires no special skills to make and the “stuff you already have in your fridge” ingredient list made it an ideal choice for busy me to submit for competition.  And lest you think there is no forethought to my delay in sharing it with you let me just say that while strawberries and peaches are not exactly flavorful and abundant this time of year, you can always find decent carrots.

The earthy carrot flavors brightened with lemon and made sophisticated with a whisper of cognac will delight all you serve it to.  Best with a hunk of tasty bread and a pat of cold butter.  Carrot Confiture made its first appearance at Sis Boom Blog back in July when it was used as a topping for Dorie Greenspan’s Corn Pancake appetizers.  Again, sorry for the delay in sharing.  I hope you find it was worth the wait.

Lemony Carrot Confiture

Lemony Carrot Confiture

Adapted from Laura Calder

This is what you will need:

  • 1 lb carrots, trimmed and peeled.
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • zest of one lemon
  • Juice of 2 lemons, to taste
  • 10 whole almonds, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons cognac

This is how you make it:

  1. Slice the carrots into 1 to 2 inch pieces and put in a medium saucepan.
  2. Cover the carrots with water and bring to a boil.
  3. Continue cooking until carrots are very soft.
  4. Strain carrots from water and then put into a food mill and puree.
  5. Return the puree to the saucepan and add the sugar and lemon juice and stir until the mixture is “glassy and jammy”.
  6. Add zest and quickly stir to mix well.
  7. Remove from heat and stir in the chopped almonds and then the cognac.
  8. Either let cool and refrigerate until using or add to hot sterilized jars and process in a water bath for 5 minutes.

Lemon Carrot Confiture

About Trevor Kensey

To be truthful, I don't know what “Sis. Boom. [blog!]" means either. The name implies something explosive just happened I suppose I would like it if each post would make made a small 'boom' in your day or at least a fizzle. Even though a recipe is included with every post I have a hard time calling this a "food blog" or even myself a "food blogger".

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  1. Do I detect a pinch of sarcasm in your confiture? Must be the secret ingredient. I was mortified when Brad dressed us in identical outfits! If you wear white to our next soirée, I’ll just die!

  2. I just had to take time out from writing thank you letters to my fans to comment on this wonderful, heartfelt post! Those of us who have achieved the top level of food blogging must take time out to support one another, as this is an exhausting, cut throat business!! It says so much that you still find the time to mingle with your public and share your recipes. You will ALWAYS be my favorite other of them all!!! xoxo

  3. Looks wonderful! I always get confused between preserves, confiture, and the others!

  4. You make me smile. And I love your recipe;have no idea how you came up with it, but I think it would taste great over goat’s cheese. Growing up we always went to the Kankakee County Fair where corn reigned supreme. Orange County sounds like a huge step up.

  5. I’m busting up over here. I don’t know how I missed all your fame and fortune from your OC fair wins last year. Congratulations! Last year is the one year I didn’t make it to the OC fair myself (not that I’ve ever entered a food or blog competition, I go to eat brisket sandwiches and check out the baby animals). But now you have my wheels turning–better watch out, my one of my uber popular blog posts or fantabulous recipes may just edge you out in 2013. Ha!

    In all seriousness, your carrot confiture sounds fantastic. I love the vibrance and I bet it’s delicious. I’m into all things preserved these days and I have pinned this to try. Next time don’t wait half a year to share with your eager public!

  6. Congratulations, Trevor! And to think, I can say, “I knew him when we were all Doristas, just starting out!” LOL! You always make me smile (except for the black cocktail, but that’s part of life, too).

  7. You’re so famous! I can’t wait to meet you and your award-winning brain at the WOR party!

  8. Too funny, Trevor. Congratulations on your award! I have never heard of carrot confiture, but yours looks delicious.

  9. I’m with her. I’ve never heard of c. Confiture either. I think you stole it from Vogue. I’m sure it’s some french fashion trend – who else would make carrot jam? Pretty soon you will have your own network! I love that award ….. “other”. You’ve always struck me as an “other”. 😉 Congrats – well-deserved!!!

  10. So, what can I say. First, félicitations. It’s a pressure-packed world we live in, Trevor, and you are rolling with it successfully. With irony, wit, and humor and, yes, a tad bit of sarcasm. Sounds as if you are having fun and growing your fan club. This carrot stuff looks delicious. Nice job.

  11. I love visiting your blog, Trevor…I always leave in such a good mood! I printed a recipe for Carrot Jam years ago and never made it…for some reason the flavors intrigued me! Yours sounds and looks delicious…an award well-deserved!!! Congrats! Great photos!!

  12. Congrats on the win – and doesn’t that confiture look devine. Such a smashing colour.