Monday, November 21, 2011

Goes Together Like Peas and Carrots

Pairings are a funny thing. We were discussing this yesterday when The Actress and Armani came down to visit Thatbaby. As we were walking home from lunch, we reflected upon how different our lifestyles were when we all first met each other.

When I met Thatboy I was looking for a fun college fling. The fact that he'd be graduating in a little over a year meant, for me, that I wouldn't have to worry about anything long term. Unbeknownst to me, he had already had his fill of flings. He was looking for something more serious. And while he certainly wasn't looking for me, he quickly discovered I fit the bill perfectly.

The Actress and I were roommates and while I was trying to suck the life out of every last minute of college, she was incredibly homesick for the first 3 months - flying home almost every weekend. I was out to have a good time, and she was having near hysterical breakdowns over the amount of glitter that ended up on our floor. We laugh about the differences now and I point out that even our worst moments couldn't have been so bad, given how close we remain.

And as for Armani, I never would have put the two of them together - and trust me, I set him up with just about every one of my friends other than The Actress. I mean, she was as far from a party girl as you could get (her self-described "rebellious" period was when she started trying to become more independent from her family by calling them less.) And he was one of the main leaders of his fraternity, out almost every night. So, although I adored both of them, I never would have imagined them dating, let alone married for 3 years now.

It's been over 10 years since we've known each other, and it's amazing to see how we've grown, matured, and yet still remain the same. How this unlikely grouping continues to thrive despite, or perhaps because of our differences.

The pairing of peas and carrots is not nearly as unusual, or uncommon. We're very used to it. Except when you stop to think about it, the two vegetables couldn't be more different. Carrots, a root vegetable. grow underground. They're tough, hearty, and strong. Peas on the other hand grow barely suspended from a tendril. They are small and delicate. Even their vibrant hues are on opposite ends of the color spectrum. And yet, they just work together so well that the combination has become commonplace in households.

The easiest, and most common way to find this pairing is a simple chop and toss of the cooked vegetables. This carrot and pea custard is a little more unusual and a little more elegant. Served in slices like a pie it's both visually appealing and delicious - although that's not surprising given the ingredients. The beautiful colors make it a fine choice for both autumn and spring and it's perfect for a holiday meal.

Carrot and Pea Custard
2 1/2 cups cooked carrots
3 sprigs thyme, chopped
3 Tbsp melted butter
2 eggs, beaten
1 TBSP flour
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1/2 cup cooked peas
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a casserole dish with baking spray. Mash the carrots until mostly smooth. Some chunks are okay.
  2. Mix all the ingredients but the peas in a bowl and stir until thoroughly combined.
  3. Spoon into the casserole. Place the casserole dish in a shallow pan of hot water and bake for 45 minutes.
  4. Press down the center of the carrots with the back of the spoon to create a depression. Fill the depression with the peas.


  1. I have never seen a custard like this. It looks really good. You are so lucky to have friends that work together. Such a bonus.

  2. It really can be so funny how things work out. I'm still waiting for the pea to my carrot. But he MUST be out there!

  3. It just tells us you never know what will happen. How our lives have changed!