Carrot Fritters

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You’ll find this recipe in:
The Lady’s Assistant for Regulating and Supplying the Table
By: Mrs. Charlotte Mason
London, 1787

Original Recipe:

Carrot Fritters.
TAKE two or three boiled carrots, beat them with a ſpoon till they are a ſmooth pulp; put to every carrot two or three eggs, a little nutmeg, to three carrots put a handful of flour; wet them with cream, milk or ſack; add to them as much ſugar as will ſweeten them; beat them well half an hour, and fry them in boiling lard; ſqueeze over them a Seville orange, and ſhake some fine ſugar over them.

My Recipe:

2 carrots
5 eggs
½ tsp nutmeg
½ cup white sugar – 60 g
½ cup milk – or cream, or sack (sherry) – 120 mL
¾ cup flour – 110 g
Butter or oil
1 orange (or orange juice)
white sugar (for sprinkling on top of the fritters)

1) Peel and chop the carrots and boil in a pot of water until very soft. Mash them in a bowl once they are cool.

2) Add the eggs, nutmeg and white sugar to the carrots. Next add your liquid (milk, cream or sack/sherry) and the flour. Whisk everything together. Juice the orange if you’re using fresh juice instead of purchased orange juice.

3) Fry the fritters in a frying pan in butter or oil. Once they’re fried on both sides, remove to a plate, spoon some orange juice on top and sprinkle the fritters with sugar.

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Carrot Fritters are very delicious, but they taste like oranges, not carrots. I think sneaky parents of picky eaters could puree the carrots very smoothly, call them Orange Pancakes and use this recipe to get some vegetables into their kids.

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you may have noticed a change in location from the kitchen in my house. I was lucky enough to spend a day preparing food at Nelles Manor Museum in Grimsby, Ontario and these Carrot Fritters were extra delicious because they were fried with a wood fire in the museum’s 230-year old open hearth!

I taught 4 sold-out open hearth cooking classes at Nelles Manor last autumn, and I’ll be teaching 3 more cooking classes on July 28 & 30. As of today, there are still tickets available for all three classes. Contact Nelles Manor at or 289 – 235 – 7755 to reserve your spots.

This time around, we’ll be preparing recipes from the 1780s & 1790s (when Nelles Manor was a newly-built home) and we’ll be taking full advantage of the fresh garden produce that’s seasonally available to us Canadians in late July.

Nelles Manor has also acquired some new cooking implements, so we’ll be roasting chicken breasts in a reflector oven in front of the fire. I’ve also wanted a cast iron Salamander for a while, so I’m hoping to use these classes as an excuse to treat myself to one! If I do get one, expect a beautifully seared buttered breadcrumb topping on the chicken dish we’ll be preparing.

Of course, the day that I picked to come to Nelles Manor was 31 C, which felt like 38 C (100 F) with the humidity. So you can imagine that it was not an ideal day to be standing next to a fire. I brought a lot of water, but there’s a wall of screen doors next to the historic kitchen and we placed a fan strategically to suck the hot air out of the room. It was warm and I drank all the water I brought, but the air flow made the kitchen an alright place to be. Not bad for a worse-case-scenario hot day!

On this recipe testing day, I roasted the chicken breasts and prepared the chicken dish that we’ll be making at the classes (these recipes will be a blog post after the classes happen). I also wanted to settle how we’d be frying Strawberry Fritters at the classes, so I selected this similar Carrot Fritter recipe and I tried out the two methods that you see in the pictures.

The first method is to shovel hot coals under a trivet or stand and set a frying pan on top of the trivet. Frying method #2 is to hang a frying pan from the crane in the open hearth and fry the fritters directly over the fire. The hanging frying pan at Nelles Manor isn’t quite in cooking condition, so I used it as a handle and nestled one of my frying pans inside. I found the best results came from the trivet and hot coals, so that’s what we’ll be doing at the class.


It’s easy to quickly adjust the temperature for any cooking implement hanging off an open hearth crane in two ways: you can swing the crane back and forth, further away or closer to the fire. The second way to adjust temperature is to move the pot or pan up and down using hooks of different lengths.

In this picture, you’ll see a variety of hooks that can be used to make the pan hotter or cooler. I picked up the hooks that the frying pans are hanging from at Fort George in Niagara-on-the-Lake. I wasn’t sure how I was going to use these handmade hooks when I bought them, but most of the time I hang my frying pans off them in my kitchen and they’ve come in very handy when I teach open hearth cooking!


I had to replenish the hot coals once while I was frying my fritters, but frying fritters on a trivet (or stand) & hot coals had a much more even temperature than the other method. To do this, you temporarily move the burning wood aside in your fire and use a shovel to create a pile of hot coals. Place the trivet and frying pan on top of the pile, and Bob’s your Uncle! Then take a moment to remake your fire by pushing the wood back together and adding one or two new pieces of wood. As you can see, the trivet at Nelles Manor also has a handy support to hold the frying pan handle!

Read the Cookbook: