Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Carrot Flowers

When we picked up our produce from our local CSA farm last week and found rainbow carrots I knew that I had to make carrot flowers for a stir fry. Soeur (Sister) Seng taught me how to make them when I was a missionary for my church in France. Soeur Seng's dad was from Cambodia and her mom was from Thailand and when she was 5 they fled to France where she still lives. Imagine a cook with a Thai/French background and you get one amazing meal after another. I loved getting to know her and I loved benefiting from her cooking! I tried to learn what I could from her and one of the recipes I've somewhat retained was her stir fry. I say recipe but this girl did not own one recipe book, it all came naturally.

To make flower carrots you cut the top of the carrot off and peel the carrot. Then you make shallow lengthwise cuts that form a triangle shapes all around the carrot. Depending on the size of the carrot you can make 4-5. Then you slice the carrot up and throw the flowers into your favorite stir-fry or any other recipe you want to give some extra appeal. The long carrot pieces can be thrown in your recipe as well but won't need to be cooked as long as the flower carrots. My picture of cutting the carrots didn't turn out so let me know if you have any questions about the process.
To make a stir-fry the 'Soeur Seng way' you chop up a few different vegetables. I use what I have on hand and yesterday that was onions, carrots, bell peppers and green beans. First you heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. When it is heated (medium/high heat) you add 1 teaspoon of minced garlic. After a minute or two when the garlic browns slightly add the onions and saute for 3-4 minutes. Then add the rest of your vegetables with around 1 1/2 - 2 cups of water. When the vegetables are tender (test them with a fork) add some soy-sauce (around 1/4 cup). Taste it as you go and add more water or soy sauce depending on your flavor preference. Let everything simmer for 3-5 minutes and serve over rice.
MG was curious about the flowers and I know with time she'll be begging for me to make them for her.

Bon Appetit, or as some of my favorite French families say:

Bonna Bonna,

Gros Bisous Soeur Seng!!


Jen said...

I didn't know carrots grew in different colors and I loved the flowers. How fun!

Little Birdie Secrets said...

Augh! Those are the cutest things I ever seen! Now I have a reason to buy those cool purple carrots at the farmers' market. Thanks!

Heather said...

Okay.First off, I'm a little behind on the allergy blog so I hope you see this comment.
Second, I did not know you were compies with Sr. Seng. I was too, and she always did the cooking (never with any sort of recipe) and it was always good. Third, do you have any news of her at all? I think about her and wonder what is going on in her life. We actually stopped through Annecy a couple of years ago and I didn't get in touch with her.
Thanks for the tips on stir fry and freezing blueberries.
One more thing, did Sr. Seng ever make that pasta dish with emmentaler(sp?) cheese and an egg with sel fou? Oh how I loved that dish. Even though I have some sel fou, it just doesn't taste very good when I try it!
(sorry for the ginourmous comment!)

Megan said...

What a cute idea! It looks yummy.