Try these spicy veggie bites for a lighter option – perfect with this cooling yogurt dip that guests will love.

Makes 16

Ingredients:

For the bites:

  • 4 large carrots
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 150g feta, crumbled into small chunks
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • 4 tbsp plain flour
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • Small handful of parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

For the dip:

  • 150g natural yogurt
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Small handful of parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste

Method:

  1. Coarsely grate the carrots and mix with the salt in a large bowl (it sounds like a lot of salt, but it’s just there to draw the moisture out of the carrots, and most of it will be lost). Let the salted carrot sit for 10 minutes, then squeeze it out – either in your hands or through a muslin cloth or tea towel – removing as much of the liquid as you can.
  2. Stir the spring onions, feta, lime zest, flour, spices and parsley into the drained carrot. Whisk the eggs lightly together then add them to the mix. If the mixture is too dry to just about hold together in balls when you squeeze it in between your palms, add a drop of milk or water.If it’s too wet, add another tablespoon of flour.
  3. Heat a little oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Divide the carrot mixture into 16 portions, shaping each little mound into a rough rugby ball shape using your hands. Working in batches, fry over a medium heat for around 4 minutes, giving them a quarter turn every minute, until they’re nicely browned and set on all sides.
  4. For the dipping sauce, mix the yogurt, lime juice and parsley with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Serve with the carrot bites while they’re hot.

Extracted from Flavour: Eat What You Love by Ruby Tandoh (£20, Chatto & Windus)

Want more Christmas canapé ideas? Try Amelia Freer’s smoked salmon, beetroot and buckwheat toasts

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