Marinated Carrot Salad Recipe
This marinated carrot salad recipe takes shredded carrots and blends them with an array of spices to create a healthy, refreshing side salad.
Picking the Right Carrots
Carrots purchased from the grocery store are often bitter, old, and bland. A telltale sign of an old carrot is small root hairs starting to grow on them, as they try to make their way back to the earth. However, since non-organic carrots are often rinsed with a sanitizing solution, this may prohibit these roots from growing. When you are buying fresh carrots at the farmer’s market, smell them. It sounds strange, but it should be the carroty-est smell you’ve ever smelled.
Carrots store well in cool dry conditions, so if you do come across fresh farmer’s market carrots, be sure to buy a few pounds and store them in your refrigerator, in a plastic bag, tops removed, in the produce drawer (if it’s not too damp).
About this Recipe
When I was a kid, my mom kept cut up carrots sticks in a cup of water at kid-eye level in the refrigerator, so when hungry eyes peered into the fridge, they were easy to grab for a healthy snack. Growing up, a plastic bag of carrots was a grocery staple I would plop in the basket, without a second thought, while shopping with my mom.
When I was 30 years old, I moved back to Long Beach, CA, where I grew up, and started a home delivery organic produce business. We delivered produce straight from the farmer’s market to your door, providing convenience and the good feeling that comes with supporting small farmers. Before I owned beachgreens, I hadn’t given much thought to those carrots from the supermarket.
I still remember the cool early mornings, shopping at the farmer’s market for beachgreens deliveries. One morning, a crunchy bite of the “Scarlet Nantes” variety carrot from Jerry Rutiz’s farm in San Luis Obispo, CA, took me to another place. Time stopped briefly, as my tastebuds savored the crisp, sweet, earthy and satisfying crunch of the first bite. It had a depth of flavor that burst forward from this chubby carrot. Maybe it was because I hadn’t had breakfast yet, but my tastebuds were screaming, “YES!”
A quick and delicious side dish, this marinated carrot salad recipe takes the humble carrot and elevates it to another level. Use fresh carrots from the farmer’s market if possible.
- 5 medium carrots (about 1 pound)
- 1 Tablespoon capers
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt or to taste
- 4 grinds black pepper freshly ground
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
Wash and grate carrots*. Mince capers.
Combine grated carrots, capers, cumin, olive oil, and vinegar in a bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper. If serving immediately, add feta cheese, toss and serve.
This salad tastes better with time. If you have time to let it marinate, put the mixture in the refrigerator and add the feta cheese right before serving.
*One of my favorite things about having a food processor at the ready is the grating attachment. Grating the carrots in this recipe takes about 30 seconds. If you don’t have a food processor use a box grater or other handheld grater.