I’m so excited that it’s finally June, because carrots at not only in season but they are also at their best right now. I think it’s super easy to overlook the humble carrot – and I’ll even admit that I have some pretty bad memories surrounding soggy and watery carrots served up in school, but carrots that are cooked well are a pure joy and I’m here making a stand for this noble ingredient! One that is not only super versatile but when taken the time to appreciate its structure and taste profile can create magic.
From baby chantenay carrots lovingly sautéed until moist and glistening to the long slender carrots that are cooked just enough to tame their renowned crunch and everything in-between. We are talking smooth velvety purees, grated golden showers folded through cake and bread batters, moulded into rositis or chargrilled to perfection, leaving them slightly bitter on the outside and buttery-soft on the inside. I wanted to create a recipe that celebrated carrots in their wholesome and it just so happened that I managed to combine them with all of my favourite things – I love it when things work out like that!
And what was created was a simple but delicious Spiced Carrot dish with nutty coconut served with a take on my gram flour crepes – I’ve played around with the recipe and added grated carrot into the mix and the result is fantastic. Not only does it make them look super flashy with their bright orange exterior but is also a great way to get an extra dose of vegetables into your diet or hide them from picky kids!
I’ve also done this with spinach – which you can find here!
I’m not quite sure why I haven’t thought of adding grated carrots to my crepes before, I’ve added to thicker savoury pancakes many times, but they work just as well in a thinner batter. Once the dish is all perfectly plated I top it with a fresh and creamy mint coconut dressing, which I know you are all going to love – so much so, that I recommend making extra and keeping it in the fridge to lovingly slather on fresh toasted sourdough, plop on top of roasted veggies or drizzle into soups and curries.
The inspiration for this dish comes from an Indian Thoran – a dry spiced vegetable curry dish made with coconut from Kerala, which I absolutely love. It’s normally made with finely chopped cabbage, unripe jack fruit or beans but Thoran can also be made with carrots, green tomatoes or spinach. Carrots being our choice of weapon today. The spice mix that I’m using is a combination of turmeric, cumin seeds, black mustard seeds and coriander.
This is also typical of Southern Indian cuisines and a mixture that features in plenty of my dishes both on the website and in my book (Rebel Recipes, which you can buy here). Black mustard seeds are an unusual one for a lot of people who are not quite that well versed in the spice world just yet, but they are an incredible ingredient. They pack quite a punch and are normally fried to release their fragrance.
But please don’t be scared about all the different spices that this recipe has, they perfectly balance each other out and means you’re able to easily adjust to your own heat and spice preference. I absolutely love spicy food after travelling around the Middle East for many years, so I tend to always add in an extra pinch or two when I make this dish. Also, feel free to skip a few of the scarier and more intense spices if you are making this for a family of little ones.
This recipe is super quick and simple to make and once you have the method down you can try with a whole host of different vegetables that you have lying around. Why not try some of these simple swaps.
- You can swap the carrots for beetroot, sweet potato, a whole variety of different squashes or courgette.
- If you can’t get hold of gram flour you can use buckwheat, spelt, wholemeal or organic white.
- Swap black mustard seeds for dry mustard powder. Use 1/2-3/4 worth per tsp of mustard seeds required. Or use pre-made mustard but you will need to reduce your liquid intake.
If you like this recipe, why not give one of my other carrot recipes a try? This Roast Carrot Dal with Herby Raita is a combination of my favourite ingredients and the carrots work perfectly in thickening the sauce and providing crunch and sweetness.
Wanting to eat the rainbow this Roasted Rainbow Carrot with Beetroot, Hummus and Gomashiois the perfect way to cook and devour it.
And finally my Spiced Maple Roast Carrots and Parsnips with Mustard Polenta Mash and Caramelised Onionsis the perfect Sunday Lunch alternative.
I really hope you love this delicious dish as much as I do; make sure to post and tag with @rebelrecipes #rebelrecipes if you make this dish so I can see and repost your gorgeous creations!
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