Spiced Carrot Fritters

As may have been clear from this blog I’m a huge fan of Jamie Oliver’s cookbook ‘Veg’ and this might well be my favourite recipe from it so far. I was extra impressed that I’d managed to get it on the table as I’d finally had my first confirmed COVID infection after attending our yearly company conference held in the south of the country this time. Monday to Wednesday was grim living with COVID and the lasting effects of the HIIT class I’d signed up for at the work event but after struggling to work through those days to get all the month-end journals in I decided I couldn’t go on any longer. I signed off work in the morning, had a three hour nap and got woken up by my cat pawing me in the face. When I was a bit better I found the time to watch Taxi Driver which I’ve always wanted to watch so at least my week wasn’t completely wasted.

These delicious pancakes are spiced with cumin, fennel seeds, chilli and coriander but to divert from the topic once again just because I found it quite interesting – I was watching Rick Stein’s India and he was talking about how when the spices started first travelling from India to England, the first one that was really desired was pepper. People really hadn’t had anything like it before with it’s slight kick. It’s so funny as it’s just a table condiment now and not at all seen as exotic!

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 150g carrots (I think around 2 medium)
  • 1 green chilli
  • 15g coriander leaves
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 /2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 cup self raising flour (I used a measuring jug and filled to one cup level)
  • 1 cup milk (as above)
  • 1 egg
  • oil
  • 100g crunchy veg (radishes/cucumber/carrots)
  • rose harissa
  • 1 bag watercress
  • 40g feta
  • hummus

Method

1.) Make up the salad by chopping up/peeling the veg you’ve chosen. If you’re using cucumber it’s best to cut out the seeds as they will make everything watery. Put these in a salad bowl with the watercress. Crumble in the feta.

2,) Peel and grate the 150g carrots. Add to another large bowl. Finely chop the chilli and coriander leaves and add to the bowl. Chuck in the fennel and cumin. Peel and slice the onion and add to the bowl.

3.) In a measuring jug, add the flour and milk and mix well with a fork. Crack in the egg and mix that in too. Pour the batter in with the carrots and give everything a stir.

4.) In a frying pan, heat up some oil and add about 1/2 a ladleful of the mixture. Cook until browning then flip over and brown the other side.

5.) Repeat until you get through all of the mixture.

6.) Serve the pancakes with some salad, a dollop of the hummus and a teaspoon or two of the rose harissa.

Root vegetable fries

During my mid-week French class, my teacher directed us to a website with questions that were funny conversation starters and asked us to choose some questions to ask each other. I saw a question about what is the craziest story you have about a colleague. I had to pick this one as I used to work with a lady who would have for lunch almost every day (during the 18 months she worked at the company) several carrots that she would grate, mixed with some oil and salt and pepper. Needless to say, I think these root vegetable fries are a much more interesting way to serve carrot. I was really fancying a burger and I always struggle with coming up with an interesting side salad to a burger. These ‘fries’ solved the problem in getting my 5 a day and aren’t actually fried so are healthy too. The recipe was in ‘Vegan for Good’.

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 750g root vegetables (anything you like, I used carrot, swede and parsnip)
  • 1 tbsp garlic infused oil
  • salt

Method

1.) Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C and prepare a baking tray.

2.) Peel all the vegetables. and cut into fry shapes.

3.) Boil all the veg for 5 minutes then drain well. Leave in the colander for a couple of minutes to drain off as much water as possible.

4.) Spread the fries out on the baking tray and drizzle with the garlic oil.

5.) Sprinkle with a bit of salt.

6.) Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until crisp.