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Spicy carrot and chickpea pitta pocket

This is one of those recipes that transforms everyday fridge and cupboard staples into something special. The chickpeas don’t dominate: they provide a nutty, creamy counterpoint, but the spiced, buttery carrots are the stars of the show. You can also serve it on bruschetta – or indeed bread-free, as part of a vegetable mezze-style feast.


Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and let them fry for a minute or two. Add the carrots and fry for about 8–10 minutes, stirring often, until tender and starting to brown, but still with some bite.

Add the garlic, orange zest, paprika and chickpeas and cook until the chickpeas are hot. Remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper and add a good squeeze of orange juice. Taste and add more salt, pepper and/or orange juice as needed.

Spoon some of the chickpea mixture into the pocket of a warmed pitta (or into the middle of each flatbread) and top with a spoonful of yoghurt. Fold flatbreads, if using. Serve straight away.

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  • 2 tablespoon rapeseed or olive oil
  • 1 heaped teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 4 large carrots (about 500g), peeled and cut into 2–3mm thick slices
  • 1 large garlic clove, finely sliced
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange, plus a good squeeze of juice
  • 1 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
  • 400g tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 pitta breads or freshly cooked, soft flatbreads
  • 4 heaped tablespoons plain yoghurt or vegan alternative such as almond creme fraiche
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

This recipe is taken from...

River Cottage Veg Every Day!