MEDITERRANEAN CARROT ROLLS
You wouldn't think that you could turn the humble carrot into a sophisticated canapé or starter, and I can tell from the look on our guests faces when I say 'here you go, some Mediterranean Carrot rolls,' that they think the same.......that is until they try one!!! Everyone we have served these to has loved them/wanted more/asked for the recipe.
The original recipe is from Antony Worrall Thompson's 'A-Z of AWT.' You can play around with all the herbs and other seasonings too. I like a bit of cayenne and cumin, to cut through some of those sweeter ingredients. This goes really well with a bit of salad and some tzatziki (that's a sauce made from cucumber, yoghurt, mint and garlic.)
Stu always groans when I say we are going to make these, they are a little labour intensive but trust me when I say well worth it! The thing is that I normally ask him to do the rolling into little sausages and, as I've normally multiplied the recipe by 4 so I can freeze a load down. I guess I can appreciate his frustration!
With the method, I cannot emphasize enough how dry the carrots need to be after cooking them. I would suggest putting them back on a really low heat after you have drained them to steam off any excess liquid. And even after that, I would blot them on a load of kitchen towel. You could also leave them spread out on a tray lined with kitchen towel in the fridge overnight.
Makes about 30 small sausages for canapés, or 8-10 larger ones for a starter
· 10 medium carrots peeled, chopped and cooked until very soft, then very well drained
· 2 slices white bread rubbed into crumbs
· 6 dried apricots, finely chopped
· 2 tspn sultanas finely chopped
· 4 spring onions, finely diced
· 2 tbspn pine nuts, chopped
· 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
· 2 tspn finely grated orange zest
· 1 egg
· 6 tbspn mixed chopped parsley, mint and dill
· Plain flour for dusting
· Vegetable oil for shallow frying
· Mash the carrots, if they seem really wet still, blot on a load of kitchen paper
· In a bowl, mix with the remaining ingredients apart from the flour and oil. If it’s still quite damp, add a few more breadcrumbs. You want to be able to form small sausages easily
· Mould the mixture into small sausages or patties, using the flour to coat your hands to prevent sticking
· Roll each piece in flour, tapping off any excess
· Heat a frying pan with some vegetable oil and shallow fry the rolls on all sides until golden brown, then blot on some kitchen towel
· Arrange on a plate and serve warm with some yogurt dip