Confit carrots

Confit carrots

By
From
Best Kitchen Basics
Makes
1 kg
Photographer
Petrina Tinslay

‘Confit’ is a French word meaning to preserve. It usually involves duck, goose or pork and uses some form of fat, cooked long and languidly at low temperature. The fat medium allows the collagen to break down into a gelatinous form without drying the more delicate meat. In the case of the carrot, none of this applies. The long, slow cooking allows the moisture to evaporate, concentrating the flavour compounds and sugars. For most of the cooking, the carrot maintains the horror of boiled carrots past, but persevere and the delicate floral and apricot notes begin to assert themselves and transform this humble vegetable. Serve these as a decadent side dish with fish or meat, on their own, or with home-made vanilla ice cream. There are no rules.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1kg large carrots
300ml cold-pressed rice bran oil
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon white peppercorns
1/2 lemongrass stem, white part only

Method

  1. Peel the carrots and remove the stems. Cut them in half lengthways and then into 1 cm slices. Put them in a heavy-based saucepan with the oil, coriander seeds and peppercorns.
  2. Cut the lemongrass into 5 cm pieces, smash with the back of the knife and add them to the saucepan.
  3. Heat to a low simmer and cook for 3–4 hours until the carrots taste like dried apricots. Store them in a sealed jar in their oil until required. These will keep for 2–3 weeks.
  4. To serve, drain the carrots and quickly sauté them – no additional fat required.
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