It’s still all about the simple around here.
This salad was so simple that I threw it together in about fifteen minutes before rushing out to a yoga class. The only part that takes any time is ribboning (is that a verb?) the carrots.
Until this week, the only carrot salad I can remember eaten was made with grated carrot and raspberry wine vinegar. It’s from a Moosewood cookbook and it’s delicious. But this one is entirely different. Since the carrots are thinly sliced – ribboned using a vegetable peeler – there is much less moisture than with grated carrots and it keeps much better in the fridge.
Again, this recipe is from 101 cookbooks. The original calls for the carrots, dressed with lemon juice and lemon zest, plus chopped fresh chile, cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Because of my lack of ingredients, my version turned out to be even simpler than the original. I’m not allowed to eat chiles, and my cilantro was slimy and brown. Too bad, because I’m sure it would be killer in this. Especially due to my intense love of cilantro. (Have I mentioned that? The fact that I can’t get enough of its earthy-yet-fresh taste, and J won’t touch it and swears it tastes like dirt? Yeah, I’m eating a lot of cilantro while he’s away this summer.)
So my plain-jane version was carrots, lemon and pumpkin seeds. I wasn’t super impressed when I first started eating it, but after it mellowed in the fridge I started to like the flavours more. It surprised me that the recipes calls for you to quickly sauté the carrot ribbons in a frying pan with a little oil, but I think it’s an important step. Like Heidi says, it takes the edge off their rawness.
Final verdict: better than the raw sticks that filled my lunch bag for days, and easier than roasting or caramelizing in this June heat. And frankly, when you can eat as little as I can right now, you’re grateful for something cold, sweet and nutritious that you can grab from the fridge and eat by the forkful from the container.
Also - I’m telling you this a bit late - but if you’re interested, go check out a culinary Q and A with me over at fellow food blogger Sharon’s site.