Carrot Rolls with Apricots and Pine Nuts

Havuç köftesi

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A real treat when you find them, havuç köftesi rarely make an appearance outside Istanbul and Izmir. Probably the result of experimentation in the Ottoman Palace kitchens, they are delicate in flavour and quite heavenly when served hot with cold garlic-flavoured yogurt.

Ingredients

  • 10 medium-sized carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 slices bread, rubbed into crumbs
  • 6 dried apricots, finely chopped
  • 3-4 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, crushed with salt
  • 1 teaspoon kırmızı biber
  • 1 egg
  • bunch of parsley, mint and dill, finely chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • plain flour for coating
  • sunflower oil for frying

For ehe sauce

  • 3 tablespoons thick creamy yogurt
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed with salt
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  • Steam the carrots until soft. Drain well, put them in a large bowl, and mash with a fork. Add the rest of the ingredients and knead well. If there is any liquid in the mixture add more breadcrumbs but the mixture should be moist and sticky.
  • Tip a small heap of flour on to a flat surface. Take small portions of the carrot mixture in your hands and mould into oblongs. (This may seem difficult as the mixture is so sticky, but once dipped in flour the köfte are easy to handle.) Dip each köfte in the flour, and put them aside.
  • To prepare the sauce, beat the yogurt in a bowl with the garlic and lemon juice. Season to taste.
  • Heat a thin layer of oil in a large frying pan and place the köfte in it. Roll them over to brown on all sides and drain them on kitchen paper. Transfer to a serving dish, and spoon the sauce over the hot köfte or serve them separately.
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