Moroccan Radish & Carrot Salad

Moroccan Radish & Carrot Salad

My garden is positively bursting out in radishes, the first officially picked vegetable of 2012 at Casa SoupAddict.

I know this makes some of you groan inwardly — radishes might not be your thing, but they are entirely my thing, and I can scarf them up raw, roasted or tossed in a salad. Their black-peppery bite is, for me, the perfect heat: it sits on the back of the tongue, instead of the sometimes-irritating (and cough-inducing, when you’re not expecting it) back of the throat, like cayenne pepper.

But my favorite way to prepare radishes is to grate them, along with a few carrots, and toss them with a spiced marinade, some seeds and maybe crumbles of a briny cheese. I’ve written about carrot salads before (including my favorite from last summer), and aside from fresh, heirloom tomatoes, I’m most looking forward to regular servings of these crunchy salads.

Moroccan Radish & Carrot Salad

I wrote this recipe specifically with my Cincinnati Market radishes in mind (how could I not grow a variety called Cincinnati Market?). Carrot-shaped and fabulous with beautiful greenery, these radishes have the black-pepper bite I adore. I’m also growing the more familiar round, pink radishes, as well as the bi-colored French Breakfast. Better planning this year (yay, for being organized!) means I’ll have radishes through June (they’re a cool-weather crop), and they’ll overlap with the first harvest of carrots later this month.

My mom was a wise woman, and she always told us, you don’t have to like it, but you have to try it.

And to that I would add, your tastes change as you grow older, so what made you go [patouie!] 10 years ago might now be the most delicious thing this side of ice cream.

Try new things — like grated radishes in harissa-infused oil — and try the old every so often.

Moroccan Radish & Carrot Salad

Oh, and radishes + harissa = spicy bff’s. Harissa is the North African equivalent of sriracha and is more to my liking, spicy-hot-wise.

Karen xoxo

VegetarianVeganPescatarianGluten-free

Moroccan Radish & Carrot Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes       Cook time: 5 minutes       Yield: 4 side servings

Ingredients:
1/2 pound radishes, grated or chopped
1/2 pound carrots, grated
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons ras el hanout/span>
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon Harissa
1 tablespoon lemon juice (or 2 teaspoons preserved lemons – if using, leave out the salt below)
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 fresh mint leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped
1 handful young greens, such as spinach or arugula, sliced chiffonade
2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 palmful pepitas

Instructions:
Place the grated radishes and carrots in a large mixing bowl and set aside.

Heat the oil in small skillet over medium until shimmering. Add the ras el hanout, paprika, sugar and harissa. Stir for about a minute — the spices will sizzle and pop — then remove pan from heat. Add the lemon juice and salt.

Pour the spice-infused oil over the radishes and carrots and toss to evenly coat.

Sprinkle the mint, chives and young greens over the salad and toss again.

Top with feta cheese and pepitas before serving.

Notes:

  • I recommend using your food processor with the grating disk to handle the radishes and carrots. However, lacking that, if you’re using ball-shaped radishes, chopping would be easier (and safer on your fingers — box graters are flesh-hungry beasts).
  • Ras el hanout is a Moroccan spice blend made from commonly available spices. You’ll need to go to a specialty store to find it, or order online, or make your own (which is what I do).
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    Comments

    1. Darlynne says:

      Your radishes are beautiful and your mom was wise. My sister told her kids that they didn’t have to like it, but instead of saying “yuck,” they would have to say “it’s not my favorite” to politely decline something.

      I’m intrigued by ras el hanout and will commence searching. Thanks!

    2. You never cease to amaze me with your unique combinations and flavors. . . I love this marriage of carrots and radishes. (And your radishes are bee-yoo-tiful, btw.) And the spicy seasonings sound perfect. I will have a little hunt to get some of these things, but I will. This simply looks too good.
      Sprigs of Rosemary recently blogged about:  Is This a Red Pasta e Fagioli?

    3. Darlynne says:

      On a lark, I glanced at Walmart’s spice shelves yesterday and they had McCormick’s verson of ras el hanout. Who knew?

    4. Those are some fantastic looking radishes! And harissa-infused oil is going on my top list of great ideas to try asap!
      K recently blogged about:  Crustless asparagus and ramp quiche

    5. What fantastic photos! They look delicious.
      yummychunklet recently blogged about:  TwD: Baking Hungarian Shortbread with Julia

    6. This is amazing! What a mouthwatering combination of flavors.

    7. What a nice combination of spring flavors: but you are a gardener, so of course your recipes would be nicely seasonal. My husband bought some ras el hanout that’s just been sitting in the spice drawer, at least on my shifts in the kitchen. Smoked paprika: check.The one thing I don’t have is harissa, and I”ve been meaning to remedy that. Thanks for the inspiration
      Mary@FitandFed recently blogged about:  Asian-Style Carrot and Cabbage Slaw

    8. This recipe looks delicious! I have loads of radishes in the garden at the moment so will definitely be giving it a go! Gemma :)

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