Pot luck party time
“What are you bringing to the pot luck picnic tomorrow, Vinny?”
Vinny looked at his super slim and very athletic friend. “Think I’ll bring a crunchy curried cauliflower salad, Val. It’s easy. I took it to a party on the weekend and it was a hit. I just added curly lettuce leaves and my own cabbage slaw to Farm Boy’s offering and I was done.”
“Crunchy?” asked Val. “Does that mean uncooked?”
“Why, yes,” said Vinny.
“Guess I won’t be eating any, then.” Val smiled.
“Oops, I forgot! You can’t eat uncooked fiber! Sorry!” said Vinny.
“No problem,” said Val. “There will be plenty of other things there I can eat.”
But Vinny loves a challenge and began to think how he could turn his salad into something his friend Val could eat too. Easy, he thought. Cooked carrots. Just peel, slice, and add a dressing.
He’d recently had something like this on a trip to Western Canada. The original recipe called for a cup of sugar. Good though it was, that wasn’t going to happen in Vinny’s salad. Here is Vinny’s version of the copper penny salad he enjoyed at Marlene’s, spiced up with ginger and curry.
Copper penny cooked carrot salad
- 2 pounds carrots, cut into pennies
- 1 inch fresh ginger, finely chopped or 1 teaspoon ginger powder if you are avoiding fiber
- 1 can tomato soup
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon sesame seed oil (optional)
- 1 tablespoon coconut palm sugar or to taste (optional)… or an equivalent amount of liquid stevia.
- 1/2 cup vinegar (preferably apple cider vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 2 large green onions, sliced, for garnish (optional)
- Slice carrots into coins, then cook in boiling water until tender yet crisp, about 10 minutes. Drain, then submerge in cold water to cool.
- Combine soup, oil, sweetener, vinegar, ginger and curry powder and simmer for 10 minutes to bring out the ginger taste.
- Pour the tomato dressing over the carrots. Chill till serving time. You can make this up to 3 days ahead. Increase the carrots to 3 pounds for a bigger crowd. There is lots of sauce, enough to dress a larger quantity.
- For a nice presentation: Heap the saucy carrot coins in the middle of a large, deep serving platter. Ring the carrots with quartered tomatoes. Decorate with chive flowers.
Carrots make an excellent choice for a healthy future… crunchy, tasty and highly nutritious. Carrots are a particularly good source of beta-carotene, fiber, vitamin K, potassium and antioxidants. They are friendly to people trying to watch their weight and are linked to lower cholesterol levels and improved eye health. The carotene antioxidants in carrots contribute to a reduced risk of cancer.
Vinny uses the natural sweetener stevia in place of sugar. He sometimes adds a little coconut palm sugar to enhance the taste of caramel but this is entirely optional. Stevia users learn how to adapt the amount of stevia to their own taste, getting just the right sweetness without going overboard. Too much leaves a bitter taste, which should be avoided :).
In salads, Vinny likes to use olive oil. But in this recipe, with so few ingredients, olive oil might be a bit strong.
Instead, he chose avocado oil for its mild taste. Then he added a bit of sesame seed oil to give a lovely nutty flavor. Other nut oils would also work. These are Vinny’s oils of choice because they have a healthy ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids.
Spices all add unique disease-fighting properties through their high levels of antioxidants. This recipe features ginger and curry. Vinny loves to add spices to all his recipes to increase the nutritional impact, and, of course, the flavor.