Wednesday, August 11, 2010

5 Salads in 5 Days: Moroccan Carrot Salad

J is away on tour for the next couple of weeks, so I'm doing a lot of cooking for one. Sad face. But, I figured that now is the perfect opportunity to spend some extra time on me, to exercise every day and to eat lightly. It might be 55 degrees and cloudy outside (yes you read that correctly), but I'm going to act like I live in a city that gets a real summer.

My sister gave me an article about a year ago from the New York Times called "101 Simple Salads for the Season." I've been sitting on it all this time and now I'm finally going to try some of the unusual salads he suggests. So welcome to 5 Salads in 5 Days: Moroccan Carrot Salad. I'm going to bring a different salad to work every day this week and post the recipe. Enjoy!

This salad sounded unusual to me but the NY Times guys stated confidently that "there is no better use of raw carrots." The Times can't be wrong, can it? The recipe is extremely simple. I prepared the ingredients at home the night before and assembled the salad right at my desk.

3 medium carrots, shredded
1-2 Tbsp. raisins
1 1/2 tsp. toasted whole cumin seeds
1-2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
olive oil to taste
lemon juice to taste

This tasted amazing.

The most unexpected element of this dish to me was the cumin seeds. I use ground cumin on a very regular basis, but I don't often use the whole seeds. I'd never actually toasted them before, but I took the same approach I use with sesame and other seeds and cooked them in a small pan over medium heat, tossing them nearly constantly. When they bubble up slightly and crunch in your mouth, they are ready. The sweet carrots with the fresh cilantro and the smoky cumin makes an incredible combination. Even my skeptical work friends really liked this salad - highly recommended!


  1. My parents make a great version of this carrot salad, and have for many years! It's a wonderful dish to bring to a potluck/etc. Next time, try using dried currants instead of raisins (I think I like better). Also, if you let the salad sit overnight in the fridge, the flavors all mix together (especially cumin/lemon juice/currants) a bit more...

  2. Mom and I are going to make this to bring to Ravinia on Sunday. Can't wait to taste it!

  3. I agree with you idea to make the night before Kaethe, I'll totally do that next time. Also the currants sound like a good idea.

    Linda, I'm jealous. I wish I was going to Ravinia too!

  4. This is by far the most delicious use of grated carrots that I have ever tasted. I just bought 2 pounds of carrots at Aldi, and will use at least one pound to make this salad.