Carrot and Cardamom cookies

First published March 2015 in York Press.

Or, a modern twist on a war time cookie.

As the winter takes over we can depend on root crops as a vegetable source but they require a touch of ingenuity to make life more interesting. This cookie recipe is based on an old World War Two treat – when sugar and butter came in short supply – and cooks were encouraged to put nutritious potatoes and carrots in just about everything.

The grated carrot adds a little extra sweetness, meaning the cookies require less sugar. Carrot and orange is a classic combination in both sweet and savoury dishes and I would encourage you to try cardamom in any dish where orange, lemon or grapefruit are dominant flavours. Of course wartime housewives would have been overjoyed with ingredients such as fresh orange zest or cardamom to help brighten things up.


Two tablespoons of butter

One tablespoons of demerara sugar

Zest and juice of half an orange

Four tablespoons of grated carrot

Four tablespoons of white self-raising flour

Two tablespoons of wholemeal or spelt flour

Quarter of a teaspoon of ground cardamom



Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas Mark 6.

Cream the butter and demerara sugar in a roomy mixing bowl. Add the orange zest and a tablespoonful of orange juice before mixing in the grated carrot.

Combine the two flours and the ground cardamom before stirring gradually into the wet ingredients. If the mix becomes too dry simply stir in a little more of the orange juice. You are looking for soft biscuit dough.

Line your baking tray with greaseproof paper before placing large teaspoon sized amounts of the mixture onto the paper. Press each one down gently with your finger before sprinkling with a little extra demerara.

Bake for around 10 minutes or until lightly browned on top and cooked throughout.

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