King of Carrot Flowers. My Mocks & Spencer Sweet Carrot Chutney.

Carrots are a tricky beast. Easy to grow yet difficult to successfully grow. Like so many other frustrated veggie growers our carrots are constantly plagued by carrot fly. Pursued incessantly throughout the summer months (most active May to September, so that’s basically ALL summer) by this destructive little fly. On paper the carrot fly sounds monstrous; smelling a thinned or freshly pulled carrot on the wind flying a distance to find your baby carrots, laying their eggs so that their grubs feast on the poor defenceless carrot. All the while the veggie grower is blissful in their ignorance, unaware of what horrors lurk beneath the soil. Not only do we have the carrot fly to do battle with but enter the ant and if you’re really unlucky, a mole. Our plot neighbour insist that ants constantly eat their carrot seedlings (jury are still out on that one). It’s not just the marauding pests but their quite picky about their environment. Lovers of fine sandy, free draining stone free soil. Snubbing any manure splitting and growing knobbly at the first sight of a stone. And we’ve all got conditions like that, right?

This year we meant carrot business! Filling one of new beds with a mix of compost and sharp sand. When it came to sowing to reduce the need to thin, thus attract the carrot fly I splashed out on some seed tape. A little pricey but worth it, or you can always make your own seed tape. In a later sowing I sowed thinly and then,shock, horror, didn’t thin at all. Now I don’t know if these ‘seedling eating’ ants did some thinning for us or more likely they just muscled it out amongst themselves, but there was no twisted ‘hugging’ carrots. Some people like to use a barrier to prevent the carrot fly finding their seedlings but I find these ugly. An alternative is companion planting, disguising the scent and appearance of the carrot with plants like chives, spring onion, flax and Nigella. This year we finally had for the first time ever-ever, some pretty decent carrots.There’s nothing like the joy of pulling a carrot from the earth, the smell, the bright orange glistening under the layer of earth. it’s just a shame that the carrot flies love them just as much.

So what did I do with our carrot harvest? Well one of my favourite M&S sandwiches is the Wensleydale and Carrot Chutney. It’s so sweet and not heavily ‘pickley’ like other pickles or chutney. After munching through a fair few of the M&S sarnies my thoughts turned to, how could I make this chutney myself? After a read of the packet and ponder over ingredients I came up with this recipe, My ‘Mocks & Spencer’ Sweet Carrot Chutney.

Sweet Carrot Chutney (My ‘Mocks & Spencer’ Sweet Carrot Chutney)

1.5kg Carrots grated
Good chunk of ginger
500g shallots
500g light brown sugar
2 oranges, zest and juice
600ml white wine vinegar

  1. Wash, trim and peel the carrots. I quite like to keep as much skin as possible as that’s where the flavours at.
  2. Grate carrots. This can be very time-consuming so I like to run them through the grater attachment on my food processor. Much quicker and you get a nice uniform fine pieces of carrot.
  3. Thinly slice or run your shallots through the food processor (to save you from tears)
  4. Add all your ingredients to a large stock pot and bring gently to simmering point.
  5. Once simmering away nicely maintain temperature and continue to simmer the mix for around and hour and half. Stirring occasionally.
  6. Once you are able to draw a wooden spoon through the mix causing the liquid to take a few seconds to fill back, you know your chutney is ready!
  7. Whilst still piping hot fill your sterilised jars with your chutney. Packing it down with the back of a spoon to exude any air bubbles. When full place your wax discs if using and seal the lid.
  8. Once cool store in a cool dark place to mature for a couple of months. If you have any left over or your impatient line me, I like to set a bit aside in a dish in the fridge to have fresh.

After maturing your chutney’s good to go! Lovely with Wensleydale cheese or on the side of a hot buttery jacket potato. I always make a jar up special just for opening at Christmas. The sweet sticky carrot chutney makes a lovely addition to a cheese board. Yum yum.

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Author: Crafty Garden Hoe

For me it’s all about the simple things in life. Pottering around my allotment, growing things indoors and out, baking a good cake, being outside, pretty things, vintage finds and a good pot of tea. It’s all the small things that make me tick, noticing the beauty in everyday things. Although this blog initially was intended to be a blog about all these things its evolved into being basically a blog about our allotment. Our adventures, highs and lows, wins and loses. So join me & Mr Wilson as we learn from our mistakes and successes down plot 18a.

23 thoughts on “King of Carrot Flowers. My Mocks & Spencer Sweet Carrot Chutney.”

  1. Trying your recipe now ~ will let you know how it turned out! I’ve added a little bit of nutmeg and a pinch of cinnamon… it smells amazing already!

  2. Thank you so much for this recipe!! I’ve been desperate to find it! Love those M&S sandwiches!!
    This chutney is spot on and delicious!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

  3. Hi, I’m just making your chutney now and it smells delish but I don’t know whether to leave the lid on or off the pan! Any tips?

      1. My chutney was a success! At the end though I gave it a quick blitz with a handheld food processor as I wanted it less chunky for sandwiches and it was perfect! Next time I will add more ginger and try that nutmeg addition. X

  4. Plan to follow your recipe in the next couple of weeks as I too love M&S Wensleydale and Carrot Chutney sandwiches. How many jars does this recipe make? Plan to make some jars and give as gifts at Christmas.

    1. Hi there Sharon! Ah now always terrible at figuring out how many jars things make. I usually sterilise up a selection and see how many it fills. My last batch made 1ltr Kilner jar and a smaller Kilner screw top jar 0.5ltr. It’s lovely to keep until Christmas really matures sweet and juicy. Let me know how it goes! Emma x

  5. I made this yesterday after trying an award wining variety of it. I doubled the quantity, added coriander seeds for little pops of taste. I used regular onions that I cooked off prior to sweeten and regular distilled vinegar, to keep the cost down. Took a long time to cook down but wow it’s yummy!! Made approx 9 regular jam jars.

      1. I can’t stop eating it! πŸ˜€ I intended to give it as Christmas presents but I don’t think it will last that long! Yum yum.

    1. This comment is useful, thanks. Earlier, I made another carrot chutney recipe, and it had 350ml white wine vinegar to 2lbs carrots, 9oz sugar, lots of spices, etc this does not seem chutney but more like relish or like picalilli, but the carrots are still bit bite right, not much liquid, rather dry. So i want to try to mix it with this one.

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