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May

red carrots copy

Here is the latest guest post by my lovely friend Charles Perry, this time on a Moroccan carrot soup together with a picture of gorgeous red carrots which I saw in the market in Ras el-Khaimah, a small emirate bordering Oman. I am not sure if the red carrots will work in this recipe but I can imagine the colour to be pretty spectacular.

Charles Perry: In 2001, I attended a food festival in Fes, Morocco. Ostensibly, we were there to hear talks about food history. From their titles, the lectures didn’t seem to be very deep, but I could scarcely tell because they were all in French. I sat there bored and puzzled for two days until it was time for me to deliver mine.

I took a mighty revenge. I constructed a tight 750-word essay about the medieval Arab condiments made by rotting barley, which are revolting to consider but actually come out tasting like soy sauce, in which I emphasized the description of what the barley should look like when it was properly rotten: covered with “that which resembles spider webs” (ma yushbih bait al-‘ankabut).


And I delivered it in Classical Arabic. The Moroccans were impressed, and this time the French people had to sit there bored and puzzled.
Actually, of course, we were there to enjoy Moroccan food. While I was in Fes, I met Leila Benkirane, a college professor interested in food (as all Fassis are). She had translated a 13th-century Andalusian cookbook, Fudalat al-Khiwan, into French under the title Les Délices de la Table. She invited me to her home, where she delighted in showing off the elegant cuisine of her city. This is one of the dishes she served, and it was poetic on a warm Moroccan afternoon.

carrot soup copy

@charles perry

Soupe aux Carottes
4 large carrots, peeled
juice of 4 oranges
1 teaspoon orange blossom water
sugar
cinnamon

Grate the carrots, edgewise, on the fine holes of a grater. Remove only the sweet, darker colored flesh – avoid, so far as possible, any of the bitter, woody core. (Alternatively, you can quarter the carrots lengthwise and remove the core by running the tip of a knife along the division between flesh and core on both sides of each quarter. Then it will be easy to lift the core out. However, cored pieces of carrot are more troublesome to grate.)

You should have 1 ½ to 2 cups grated carrot. Divide the grated carrot between two soup bowls.
In a mixing bowl, combine the orange juice with the orange blossom water and sugar to taste. Pour this over the grated carrot in the soup bowls. Take a pinch of cinnamon between the thumb and index finger and deposit a thin line across each bowl of soup, then repeat to make another line crossing it at right angles. Serve cold. Makes two servings.

Anissa Helou: Well, I don’t know about you, but I will be making this refreshing and healthy soup very soon.


There is 9 comments on this post


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    I should think red carrots would make this soup look like a gorgeous sunset. So it would be poetic in the early evening as well the afternoon.


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    i will try it next time i see them in the souks, or in the farmers market back home. x


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    They are gorgeous are they not?
    The first time I saw carrots like this was in Pakistan in the form of a type of halweh, very sweet.
    I had never seen carrots this color and thought them beautiful.


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    they are totally beautiful, and delicious.


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    That sounds divine.


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    it is.


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    i like his write-up and i love the recipe. x shayma


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    yes, it’s a great recipe. xx


  • Warning: Undefined array key 36 in /data/40/0/131/109/783598/user/802494/htdocs/anissahelou/wp-content/themes/Anissa/functions.php on line 377

    Charles, the soup sounds divine and light and perfect for the hot days ahead. I must tell you I made your recipe with your rotting barley ( well not quite rotting) it has lurked in the back of my fridge waiting to be used and written about. I am waiting for the perfect recipe.

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