Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Spicy Salad For Your Eyes / Une Salade épicée Pour Vos Yeux


When I was about four-year old, I used to wear glasses. I had a slight squint (my siblings used to all me cross-eyed).

I used to go to the eye doctor every week, and every time we would come back from his office my father would show me a building on the far left side of the street and ask me if I can see it clearly. Most of the time my answers were an exasperating no! He would console me with a kiss on my forehead and tells me that I would do better next time and that for now a plate of carrots salad would help my eyes get better.

I don’t know if it was my mothers’ spicy carrot salad that helped my eyes get back on the right track, but at least it was a good excuse for me to have the biggest part.

This salad is very popular in Algeria and Morocco. It is usually served in a small plate along with two or three colorful seasonal salads. My mother usually boils the carrots, slices them then tosses them with a cumin vinaigrette. I came across a cute bunch of tiny carrots the other day at the grocery store and decided to leave them whole and roast them. The salad can’t be easier: Just whisk the vinaigrette, pour it over the carrots and roast the colorful bounty for about 15-20 minutes, until the carrots are caramelized and your whole house smells like a Mediterranean spice shop.

You can serve this salad slightly warm, but I think it tastes better after a few hours, to give the warm spices and the carrots a little while to “ripen”.

Another Favorite Salad:
- Roasted beets Salad


Spicy Roasted Carrot Salad

Recipe: Serves 6
- 2 thin carrot bunches, peeled
- 1 fat garlic clove, finely diced
- Lemon juice
- 2 tbsp garlic oil
- ½ tsp honey
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp paprika
- 1 pinch ground cinnamon
- 1 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
- ½ tsp Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper

Position a rack in the middle of the oven, and preheat to 400F.

In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic oil, garlic, honey, cumin seeds, paprika, cinnamon, salt and black pepper. Set the vinaigrette aside.
In a baking sheet, toss together the carrots with the vinaigrette, and bake until caramelized and tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Serve with a drizzle of lemon juice and chopped cilantro.

Algerian Carrot Salad

Salade épicée de Carottes Rôties

In Francais Please: Pour 6 personnes
- 2 bottes de carottes plus au moins fines
- 1 grosse gousse d’ail, finement hachée
- Jus de citron
- 2 c.s d’huile d’ail
- ½ c.c de miel
- 1 c.c de graines de cumin
- ½ c.c de paprika
- 1 pincée de cannelle en poudre
- 1 c.s de coriandre frais, hachée
- ½ c.c de sel (pas de sel de table)
- Poivre noir fraichement moulu

Mettre la grille du four au milieu, et préchauffer a 200C

Dans un petit bol, mélanger l’huile d’ail, l’ail, miel, graines de cumin, paprika, canelle, sel et poivre. Mettre cette vinaigrette de coté.
Mettre les carottes sur une grande tôle et les enduire de la vinaigrette. Cuire au four jusqu’a ce que les carottes deviennent tendres et caramélisées, environ 15-20 minutes.

Servir avec un filet de jus de citron et la coriandre hachée.


mima said...

Tu as place ta petite goutte de miel;quand meme!!
tu vois,les carottes t'ont reussie.Tu as now,une belle vue et de beaux yeux!!
Les parents ne racontent jamais de"salade!!!"
Ta recette est revisitee,modernisee,je la trouve super...
Tres belles couleurs aussi.Bravo et biz.

Meeta K. Wolff said...

Lovely - beautiful flavors and aromas.

Shayne said...

Warda, this looks so good, I can't wait to see the little carrots at the market and try it myself.

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

Beautiful! A neighbor who is originally from Morocco gave me a cooking lesson many years ago. We made a few main tagine-type dishes, and also several salads like this one -- one was eggplant, one red pepper, and the carrots -- the colors and flavors were spectacular.

Simply...Gluten-free said...

The salad looks delish. I can feel my eyes getting better already!

Anonymous said...

Lovely photos! Everything looks so fresh and spring-like!

Patricia Scarpin said...

Isn't your father adorable, Warda? :)

That sounds like a salad I would love. I'm crazy for carrots!

Gretchen Noelle said...

I bet the sweet carrots with the spicy sauce over them is just delicious!!!

Mary said...

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Warda said...

- Mima, merci beaucouo ma chere et tendre. Que veux-tu que je te dise pour le miel! je rattrape le temps perdu ;)

- Meeta, thanks! The spices go very well with the sweet carrots.

- Shayne, thanks sweetie! And I can't wait for the farmer's market to start. Hope you'll enjoy the salad!

- Lydia, now I understand why your tagine always look so good! It's funny that you've mentioned the eggplant and red pepper salad, because they are usually the type of salads that are served with this carrots salad. Must be in our genes ;)

- Simply Gluten free, thank you! And the visit was free! Who needs an eye doctor? :)

- Rebecca, thank you very much, and welocme!

- Patricia, he is simply the best! Glad you like the salad.

- Gretchen, it is very delicious! The only way I get my daughter to eat carrots!

- Mary, thank you very much for your award. That means a lot to me!

Anonymous said...

in french
Moi aussi je veux que ma cuisine sente la méditerrannée :)))))
Alors comme ça les carottes c'est bon pour la vue ? En carrot cake aussi tu crois ? ;op

Warda said...

- Marion, tu n'as qu'a venir chez moi, quand tu veux! Et le carrot cake east encore meilleur. C'est moi qui te le dit. C'est domage je n'y avait pas pense avant quand j'etais une 4 yeux :))))

Anonymous said...

This salad sounds lovely and a great thing to bring for picnics too. Remind me that this summer:)

Your father sounds like a sweetheart. What a nice memory to have of carrots!

Susan from Food Blogga said...

I should have 20/20 vision by the time I'm done with these carrots! They sound fantastic!

Anonymous said...

Your carrots are so flippin' cute!! I love that you left a bit of the tops on!