June 16, 2008

Quick Pickled Carrot-Cucumber Salad



Ingredients:
4 medium carrots, sliced diagonally
3 Spring onions, greens and white, chopped*
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced diagonally


dressing:
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 inch knob ginger, grated
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes


Directions:
Whisk together all of the dressing ingredients. Toss with the rest of the salad ingredients. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.



*I find that occasionally there is a tightly packed and slightly tough little section right where white bulb meets the green. I normally just toss that part and just use the bulb and the upper 3/4 of the greens.


My thoughts:
This is a crisp, fresh tasting salad that is a great way to show off some in season vegetables. It can be made up to a day before you serve it which makes it a great choice for picnics and parties. I got my inspiration for this salad from the little bowls of pickled vegetables that often accompany Vietnamese dinners or that adorn bánh mì. This recipe is similar in spirit to those pickles but with a slight twist: the addition of sesame, which I think lends an extra layer of flavor and texture and helps the vegetables from fully absorbing the dressing and becoming soggy too quickly.