Carrot Sesame Salad

It was Chinese New Year last Thursday so to bring in the year of the rabbit, we decided to have Teriyaki. Which I know is Japanese and not Chinese. But that’s what we were in the mood for. We had plans for a nice large piece of salmon, lots of rice and some sauteed garlic bok choi. But somehow I thought that we were still missing something, that we should have more vegetables, a salad or something. So I made this carrot sesame salad which I am glad I did because our timing was off a bit on the bok choi and it wilted so much it was almost hard to see on the plate.

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I know I seem to be on a bit of an orange salad kind of thing as this is the second in a row. But I just couldn’t wait to share it. I made a similar version of it with a bunch of different vegetables the next day to have with the leftovers and frankly, I prefer it simpler and just with the carrots. It’s also prettier I find. If you don’t feel like shaving the carrots with the peeler, which is I admit a bit of work, you can grate them, it probably is just as fine and pretty in about half the time.

Carrot Sesame Salad

4 portions as a side

  • 4 carrots, in long strips
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp sriracha
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cidar vinegar
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil

Put the carrots and the sesame seeds in a bowl. Whisk the remaining of the ingredients together and pour over the carrots. Mix well, let rest for at least 1 hour in the refrigirator. Mix again before serving.

Pea Radicchio Salad

I made this pea salad last Sunday for lunch. We had a bunch of peas still from the huge batch batch I bought when I saw Ontario peas were in at to the market, a nice radicchio hanging around as well a beautiful new chunk of pecorino cheese picked up the day before that I was dying to try. And to be honest, I also wanted to shell peas. I love the mindless work of shelling peas, squeezing them open, sticking my thumb in them and releasing all the peas in one fell swoop. It’s very calming for the mind.

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After the peas were shelled it was all thrown together very quickly. The peas were barely brought to a boil before being dunked in cold water and the radicchio was given a rough chop. It all found its way in a bowl with shavings of pecorino and a little olive oil and lemon juice. Quite simple but very nice as the sweet of the peas, the bitter of the radicchio and the salty mellowness of the pecorino go quite well together.

Pea Radicchio Salad

2 large servings

  • ½ cup fresh shelled peas
  • 1 small radichio, chopped roughly
  • a handful pecorino shavings
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Put the shelled fresh peas in a small pan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and immediately drain the peas and put in cold water for 5 minutes. Drain the peas again and put all them in a bowl with the radicchio. Shave some pecorino cheese over the salad and drizzle the lemon juice and olive oil. Serve.

Sweet Potato Salad

We had a sweet potato that needed to be used this week-end and for lunch Saturday, Matt decided to make this potato salad to go along with our cheese and crackers and nibblies. He had made it for himself earlier in the week and was trying to convince me that it was the most fantastic thing and while I though that yeah, it sounded good, I was not at all realizing how great it is. Not that I don’t like sweet potatoes, those are never a problem for me. But, to be honest, I am not always convinced by potato salads. They are usually so heavy, thick and potato-y and for me, reserved for the usual annual craving, in the heat of summer at a BBQ or a picnic.

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This one is nothing like those potato salads. It is simple, bright and refreshing. Although there is a bit of mayo for a tad of creaminess, it is light and not heavy. We cooked the potato but left them with a bit of a bite still and I feel this is the best way to have them, I think cooked any more wouldn’t do this any justice. It did great for a simple lunch but evidently it would be great with any BBQ of some sort or for a picnic. With these flavors it’s a bit of a tease of summer and all the good fresh things to come which is more than welcome on my part right now as the winter is getting a bit much these days.

Sweet Potato Salad

4 portions as a side

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • handful cilantro, chopped finely
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt, pepper

Put the potato in a large pot of water. Bring to a boil then boil for 20 minutes. Let cool completely. Peel and cut the sweet potato, put in a bowl with the cilantro and green onions. Whisk the remaining ingredients to make a vinaigrette, pour over the potatoes and mix well.