As we live on a farm and I believe in supporting locals, I really try hard to use our stuff or local only in the restaurant- and this time of year is very limiting with fresh produce, so I was kind of limited on our Mother’s day lunch menu for things to play with. We had carrots, onions and some baby arugula and mizuna that Matt had planted for me- luckily some other farms in the area had the forsight to plant radish, greens and spinach in their cold frames, which I was very happy to see Saturday morning! We picked up a few other things from our other favorite vendors- trout, goat cheese, etc.
I was looking through a few of my favorite cookbooks for inspiration- one of them being Chef Michael Smith’s accompanying cookbook to one of the best cooking shows of all time, and one I sorely miss- The Inn Chef. I used to watch this show with my dad on Saturday mornings, and I’m pretty certain it’s what gave me the final push to go to culinary school. Chef Smith was one of the pioneers of local cuisine in the Atlantic region of Canada, and it shows up in spades in his first 2 cookbooks…
In his book, he had constructed a terrine of carrots and goat cheese- which is a delightful flavor combination, but in a terrine it is stunning. I had made this before for a dinner party while I was in school, following the recipe verbattem, and LOVED it. As it happens, I had all of the ingredients on hand from local sources, so why not… After rereading the recipe, I made a few minor details to suit my preferences- instead of pureeing the chives, I just folded them in, I thought that the gelatin could be reduced a little, and I used apple wine that Matt had made instead of using chardonnay. Other then that, consider this an Ode to Chef Michael Smith and all of his awesome culinary intelligence.
Roasted Carrot & Goat Cheese Terrine
5 lb carrots, washed, peeled and shaved on a mandoline, meat slicer or very carefully with a knife
125 ml olive oil
750 g fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
125 ml apple wine
4 gelatin sheets (8 g)
a good amount of snipped chives (approximately 1 to 1 1/2 cups)
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350F. Toss carrots and olive oil with salt and pepper, spread carrots out on a sheet pan and roast until tender- about 15 minutes. The outer carrots will cook faster then the middle, so keep an eye on them- when these are cooked, let them cool.
In a small bowl, bloom gelatin*. While the gelatin is blooming, heat up wine, then add drained gelatin and heat to dissolve. In a larger bowl, combine goat cheese and chives, and season with salt and pepper. Add the gelatin mixture in thirds, mixing thoroughly after each addition.
Line a 12 inch x 3 inch by 3.5 inch (roughly) terrine mold with plastic wrap- spraying the mold with water or non-stick spray before laying the plastic prevent a heep of frustration. Line the terrine mold with carrots going across the width of the mold, going all of the way up the walls of the mold. Spread a thin layer of cheese, then add a layer of carrots going the legth of the terrine. Continue this until your ingredients run out, the last layer being carrots- I found I had a fair bit of carrots left at the end, but you can choose the better slices for the terrine and then use the rest in a salad or something….
Fold any carrot shavings over to the canter of the terrine and then wrap fold the plastic wrap over. Refrigerate overnight. Slice with a long thin knife, remember the end piece is for the cook, and serve with something sweet, and something crunchy- we made balsamic onion jam and some sourdough crostini. Delicious.