Sunday, September 4, 2011

RECIPE: Grated Carrots and Beets

- 1 pound carrots
- 1 pound uncooked beets (get small, young ones, with smooth skin and firm flesh)
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced, or 1 teaspoon garlic paste
- 1 tablespoon hazelnut oil (or walnut, or squash seed, or olive oil)
- 1 tablespoon honey vinegar (or cider or balsamic vinegar)
- 1 teaspoon strong Dijon mustard
- Tabasco sauce or poblano pepper flakes, to taste
- Smoked salt (or regular sea salt, or gomasio, or zaatar)
- Freshly ground black pepper

Optional add-ins:
- Leafy fresh herbs (cilantro, chervil, flat-leaf parsley), chopped
- Toasted nuts (almonds, pine nuts, cashews, peanuts) or seeds (sesame, sunflower seeds)
- Shaved parmesan or cubed feta cheese or crumbled blue cheese
- Mâche or baby spinach leaves
- A grated apple or shallot
- Any dried herb, spice, or spice mix you think might work

Serves 4 to 6.

Trim, peel, and grate the carrots and beets with a box grater or the grating disk of your food processor. Place the rest of the main ingredients, from garlic to black pepper, in a large salad bowl, add the grated carrots and beets, and toss until well combined. Add any desired add-ins and toss again.

Taste, adjust the seasoning, and let stand for 30 minutes, if you can, before serving: the beets and carrots will render juices that will make the salad moister. If you don't have that kind of time and the salad does not feel quite moist enough, add a dash of citrus juice, tomato juice, or any sort of juice.

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