I remember having an incredibly primitive recipe notebook many years ago. I used to scribble down every new recipe in it along with my regulars that I made at the time.
At the time, I used to talk to our neighbours, my Mum’s friends and even the ladies at our local fresh produce market for the sake of learning something new. The last one was a huge challenge as they all spoke with a dialect that I struggled to understand. But, in the end that’s how I put together a very large recipe archive.
I especially loved it when someone from a different culture shared their recipes with me. Like a colleague from Crete. We used to work together during certain months at a travel agent. She had a way of using every single part of vegetables. I still have some of her recipes in my archive. The recipe below was inspired by her.
Carrot and Yoghurt Meze or Yoğurtlu Havuç Ezme
3 large carrots, peeled and grated
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup very thick, Greek style yoghurt
1 large clove garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
• Peel and grate the carrots.
• Heat the oil in a saucepan on medium high and add grated carrots. Carrots will release their juice first and that’s not good for the meze. You will need to fry the carrots until they are cooked thoroughly and completely dry. When that happens, set aside cooked carrots to cool.
• Peel and crush the garlic and place it in a bowl with yoghurt. Add cooled carrots, half the dill and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
• Mix well and transfer the meze to a serving plate. Sprinkle the remaining dill and serve.
• Carrot Yoghurt Meze or Yoğurtlu Havuç Ezme is an incredible meze which you can add to your meze platter. It can also be served as a side dish.
• As a variation, you could add chopped walnuts to Carrot Yoghurt Meze, too.