Shredded Carrot Salad

Last night was one of those cooking disaster nights that ended with a call to Dominos.  But at least it wasn’t my fault. On the menu was a mustard crusted pork tenderloin with a side of carrot salad.

I opened the package of pork tenderloin and was hit with a terrible smell–sulfur everywhere in the kitchen. I checked the sell-by date: August 17, so that was OK but what was up with this odor?? I went ahead an prepared the pork trying to rationalize that the smell was the result of some weird preservative or something (knowing full well that it wasn’t, but this was $17 worth of pork!)

I cooked it. It smelled weird. It looked weird. I took a bite and spit it out.  The hubby called Dominos.

My best guess is that the store I bought it from didn’t have it stored at the proper temperature and it spoiled but they put it out for sale anyway.


However, I did come away with an amazing side dish.  I wanted to make a carrot salad similar to one that my friend Beth always makes–it has thin ribbons of carrot in a tangy, citrusy vinaigrette. It’s similar to the classic French carrot salad, but I had some cilantro that needed to be used, so this is my version of that classic with a Mexican twist. Like many things French, this recipe is very simple with minimal ingredients, but delivers BIG flavor.

While waiting for the pizza to arrive I was eating this right out of the serving bowl (classy!) and was surprised to discover that it actually pairs really well with sauvignon blanc (extra classy!)

First I had to get the carrots into ribbons.  “Easy!” I foolishly thought “I’ll just use the vegetable peeler!” Except I kept almost peeling my fingers so I came up with this device:


Macgyver-ing things in the kitchen, a speciality of mine.

Except the tines of the fork got in the way. So then I tried the mandolin, that was such a disaster I didn’t even take pictures. Next idea: food processor!  So I stacked the carrots in horizontally and fitted it with the slicing blade…

Image 1

Thumbs up because I am confident this will work.

Image 2

The results. On top, what I wanted. On the bottom, what the food processor gave me.

At this point, I had dirtied at least 3 different appliances and had carrot everywhere. This was when I said “screw it” and just shoved all the carrot pieces in the food processor with the grating blade attached. I ended up losing a lot of carrot (it was a wasteful night of cooking) but at least I finally got something that would work.

Moral of the story: Just grate the carrots.  Don’t try to get fancy with it.

This would make an excellent side to any meal and would be a great side dish to bring to summer cookouts.

Mexican Carrot Salad 


  • Image 3
  • 6 Carrots, peeled and cut to fit in food processor
  • 1 shallot (don’t use onion, it would be too strong) finely diced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro (or more/less depending on how you like it)
  • Cumin
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Place carrots in the food processor with the grating blade attached and grate.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, a dash of cumin,  and a pinch of salt and pepper
  3. Add the carrots, cilantro and shallot to this bowl and toss to combine
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in fridge for at least 30 minutes for the flavors to blend.

(Optional step if you try to get fancy) Spend 30 minutes scraping carrot off of things and cleaning various appliances.  Or don’t and just grate the carrots.

Image 4

Before combining everything–aren’t the colors pretty?


Tags: , , , , , ,

Categories: Recipes, Vegetable


A former English teacher living in Stuttgart, Germany who finds some sanity and peace through cooking.


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