Carrot and Radish salad

April 22, 2008


This was a quite a surprise I have to tell you. Last Saturday we had a “clear out the fridge” dinner. Anything that was left over from the week of shopping got cooked up. Well, pretty much everything.

I had some small carrots left over, and a big old bunch of radishes, that I hadn’t even used. I have a hard time with radishes. I never quite know what to do them. God knows why I bought them actually to be honest. A while back I did a recipe with them in, which had a great little marinade, and some beef. It was good, I liked it. Apart from that, I usually just toss them in salads. Their slightly bitter note with a decent peppery flavor.

So, anyhow. I had some carrots and radishes, and decided to put them together in a salad. I knew the radishes were going to be pretty crisp – I was going to have those raw. So why not play with textures and have the carrots softer. Ohh, I thought – I could glaze the carrots, which would make them softer than the radishes, and also slighty sweet – offsetting the bitter radishes. This was starting to sound good. Douse this in a few glugs of really good olive oil, and some apple cider vinegar – to add some sharpness, and a little sweetness further, and some parsley, and we have it made.

Turns out this was one of the best things I have ever done with a carrot. Everything went together so well. Nicely balanced. A good play with textures and sweet/bitter. Lovely.

So that is it. No profound messages or funny back stories, just a great little fresh spring salad that is a snap to make, and tastes great. I have already made it 3 times since then, and actually not changed anything. Which is pretty odd for me.


Carrot and Radish Salad

1 bunch of small carrots

4 radishes

1 small handful of chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

really good olive oil

apple cider vinegar

finely ground sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon of butter

a pinch of sugar

Gently scrub the carrots to remove any dirt. There is no need to peel these smallish carrots. Cut them into slices, across the carrot,  on a bias, about 1/4″ thick.

Using a mandoline or Japanese slicer, cut the radishes really thinly into slices.

Put the carrots in a large saute pan. Put enough cold water into the pan to almost cover the carrots. Add the butter to this, and the pinch of sugar. Put a lid on the pan, and get it boiling over a high heat. Once boiling, remove the lid. Let this boil until the liquid has reduced right down, and the carrots are almost cooked through. The aim of this is to judge things perfectly. You have it spot on when the carrots are just about cooked through, and the liquid in the pan has been reduced right down to just a glaze on the carrots. If you find you have too much liquid in the pan, tip some of it out as it is cooking. The pan dries out before the carrots are cooked? Add a little more water. It might take a couple of goes to get the perfect glaze, but it is really worth it.

Let the carrots cool a little in the pan. When cooled, toss them in a bowl with the radish slices. Toss in the parsley, and a generous serving of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add a good glug of olive oil, and a splash of of the cider vinegar.

I know, I am an arse. I am not giving you exact measurements. In this case you just cannot. The amount of oil depends on how much carrots and radishes you have. The amount of vinegar depends on this too, and how sharp your vinegar is. My suggestion is to add a little vinegar to start, and give it a taste. If you cannot taste the sharpness from the vinegar, then add a wee bit more. You can always add more, but you can never take it out if you add too much!

Finally toss in the parsley, and mix up. I like to let it sit for a few minutes before eating, just to let all the flavors get friendly.

This goes great with some grilled seafood, and bread.


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  • Celine April 22, 2008 at 3:57 pm

    this looks absolutely stunning!

  • diva April 22, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    mmm.that does sound like a really good salad. i’ll keep that in mind. great photos!x

  • Kaman April 22, 2008 at 8:44 pm

    Looks SO refreshing and perfect for Spring!!! I must try!

  • zabaione April 22, 2008 at 8:49 pm

    that’s look really good , very healthy menu.

    your’s photo so beutiful!! i love it!!

  • michelle @ TNS April 22, 2008 at 10:36 pm

    this sounds delightful. raw radishes are the best; radish and butter sandwiches rule my world. but glazed carrots rule a part of my world as well, so i bet i would love this.

    it’s on the list.

  • Anticiplate April 23, 2008 at 1:32 am

    This looks too springtime for words!

  • Brittany April 23, 2008 at 2:33 am

    Mmmmm…yummy. Sounds way healthier than my usual radish, butter or goat cheese and cracker snack. I’ll have to give this one a try. Like I said- I always pair radishes with a bunch of fat and carbs : )
    I love that picture of you (I am asuming it’s you) holding your bounty : )

  • Marc @ NoRecipes April 23, 2008 at 3:15 am

    Great photos! I especially like the one of dude holding the bunches of carrots and radishes. As for the recipe, this sounds delicious. I love simple preparations for fresh spring veggies.

  • Chuck April 23, 2008 at 3:41 am

    Carrot salad is not one of my favorite dishes, but, yours looks really good. I think it’s the sliced carrots and sliced radishes instead of grated. Beautiful, way didn’t I think of that.

  • mattwright April 23, 2008 at 4:02 am

    Thanks for all the kind comments! And yes, that is a picture of me – taken by my wife. I haven’t quite worked out yet the best way to take “me” shots without the aid of another person!

  • Nina April 24, 2008 at 6:21 am

    A lovely photo of “me”. I can hear the crunching around the table on that salad.

  • White On Rice Couple April 28, 2008 at 12:37 am

    Hey Matt, the photographs and salad here are so inspiring, I’m going out to my garden and collect the carrots for this salad. I can taste it already through the computer. Everything looks so fresh, flavorful and full of Spring.

  • Mango Power Girl May 7, 2008 at 6:00 am

    What a simple & gorgeous looking salad…the shots are great!

  • Christie @ fig&cherry May 15, 2008 at 4:40 am

    Absolutely gorgeous shots! Great recipe too, it’s next on my list to try!