A lot of times I feel like I don't eat enough vegetables. Sure, I eat plenty of fruit and probably more than my share of carbs, nuts and fiber but I'm often a slacker in the vegetable department. In an attempt to remedy this, I bought a whole bag of carrots from the grocery store and was determined to make them into something slightly more inventive than carrot sticks.
I didn't even know there was a traditional carrot salad until I did a bit of internet research. It turns out that the classic carrot salad is a mix of shredded carrots, raisins, chopped apples and... mayonnaise. However, since I wasn't in the mood for anything drenched in mayonnaise (I never am), I took a queue from the Peanut Sesame Noodle Salad I made about a month ago and the delicious sample of Asian carrot and cabbage slaw I had at Trader Joe's a few days ago.
I decided to make this salad with the traditional ingredients and a non-traditional Thai inspired dressing. The picture above doesn't do this dish any justice but it's the only one I have for now. Just trust me that this salad is much better than my picture and the dressing would be great on just about anything (well, maybe not anything, but you get the idea).
Non-Traditional Carrot Salad
For the salad
1 1lb bag of carrots, shredded (no need to peel)
1/3 cup raisins
1/4 cup roasted peanuts, chopped [I actually didn't add these because I didn't have any, but I'm positive the crunch and extra peanut flavor would really add to this salad]
1 fuji apple, diced (optional)
For the dressing
3 tablespoons natural peanut butter
2 dates, pitted
2 teaspoons Bragg's Liquids Aminos (or about 10 squirts)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon red chili paste [I used Thai Kitchen]
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
1 small clove garlic
juice of one lime
1/4 cup water
sriracha to taste
Place all dressing ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth, scraping the sides when necessary. Pour the dressing into a medium bowl and put the shredding attachment into your food processor (no need to clean the food processor because the carrots will be mixing with the dressing eventually). Shred carrots in the food processor and pour them into the bowl with the dressing. Add raisins and apple and mix until everything is coated. Sprinkle the chopped peanuts over the top.