Sometimes I get into these moods of moroseness where the slightest trigger brings my head to the ground and all activities seem a desperate effort. Nevertheless, such moods go hand-in-hand with nostalgia. There are few better way to perk oneself up somewhat than to go back in time to a different world through the best medium of all: food.
As a diplomat’s brat I managed to traverse a little splash of the globe, and one food item I’ll never forget for the sense of indulgence and comfort is the Karelian pastry. The pastry I’ve linked to is the one I remember – a rice filled pastry that is traditionally eaten with a topping of creamy scrambled eggs. I was keen to try something else out though – the carrot pastry version. I knew I wouldn’t get it exactly as they used to be, so I figured to try a variation to ease my sense of perfection. I’m glad I did! 😀
First thing’s first – I got 8 pastries out of this bunch. That’s a rather sad figure, considering I have so, so much filling left! So either my Irish potato farmer hands once again meddled where they shouldn’t have, or else the less carb-shy readers could just double the amount of dough. It is very much worth it as an interesting treat, especially when topped (I suspect) with a fig and nutritional yeast tofu scramble (with some splashes of vinegar here and there). Anyway, before I get distracting, I worked in some thyme sprinkles into the dough and used a TBSP of agave instead of molasses.
For the filling, I took about 175 ml Alpro single soy cream and let it and the 300g of diced carrots stew a bit on a very low heat (stirring occasionally). I don’t know how the carrots were supposed to absorb the cream so I just waited and stirred for about 20 minutes until I got bored. This led to a little madness at the end of that process and I sprinkled some paprika, white pepper, sweet basil and nutmeg & cinnamon into the mix. To replace egg yolks I used 1.5 x 2 tsp dry egg replacer with 1 TBSP water each and swirled that in last minute. Others suggest replacing the water with canola oil or some such, but I’ve forgotten more than I ever knew about egg yolks, so I’m not sure what it even does (egg whites have different fluff).
Golden…delicious! I used a pastry brush and painted on a mixture of coconut oil and soy milk all over, then covered it all up for half an hour, as directed. I could tell it made a big different because it was rather crunchy getting out the oven. If you like crunchy, by all means! Next time I might even leave it as is 😀
NOM! Seriously, creamy oven-roasted spicy carrots enfolded in a lovely light rye crust? Yispls. Now I just have to wait for the next appropriate opportunity to eat these suckers. At some point I’ll make the rice version for tradition’s sake, but by then hopefully the hands will be willing to play along with some daintiness.
Alas now we sit with the problem of what to do with all the other leftover carrot innards…we could make more, but we could also make a pasta with this inner delight and some peas and spinach…mmmm so hungry!