They started appearing in the late ’80s. At first, they seemed harmless enough. “Baby carrots,” the flimsy plastic packages announced. Already peeled. Bite-sized. Perfect for a quick snack or a dip in some hummus. What could be bad?But soon, their true ambitions became painfully clear. They began appearing on dinner plates, cooked, alongside meatloaf and roast chicken, as if there was no such thing as actual, normal-size carrots.
This Orwellian nightmare will continue unless we all rise up to stop it. And we should stop it. Here’s why.
THEY’RE NOT ACTUALLY BABIES.
Baby carrots are in fact full-grown carrots, whittled down into earplug-shaped cylinders. They aren’t sweeter, fresher, or younger than the bunches of carrots they’re sold alongside. In fact, they’re often made from older carrots, hence the starchy, not-very-sweet flavor you get from some bags.
THEY GET SLIMY.
Sure, it’s nice not to have to peel your carrots. But you know what happens to peeled carrots when they’ve spent a little too much time in a plastic bag? Slime.
THEY LOOK SAD ON A DINNER PLATE.
Whatever happened to the humble, old-school bias-cut carrot? These simple slices used to be the way all of America consumed their cooked carrots. Nowadays, we see folks split carrots lengthwise into quarters, then cut them into gorgeous long spears. Takes a couple seconds, looks like a million bucks. Swap in whole baby carrots instead, and somehow your plate looks a bit more cafeteria than homemade.
YOU CAN’T SHAVE THEM.
Try shaving a baby carrot into the gorgeous, curly strips seen above. You can’t. In fact, you’d probably shave off bits of your fingers instead. Yep, the coolest new thing we like to do with carrots is something a baby carrot just can’t help you with.
AND YOU MISS OUT ON THE FANCY FRONDS.
You know those frilly fronds on top of bunch carrots? They’re not there just for their looks. These bright, peppery leaves are delicious when blended with ingredients like garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice and served on top of—you guessed it—roasted (adult) carrots. Try to get this gorgeous effect with baby carrots. Just try.