Shredded carrot salad with carrot tops, currants and toasted cumin A French-inspired gourmet version of my childhood carrot salad

Carrot salad with carrot tops, currants and toasted cumin

A basic, everday carrot salad recipe…

This salad is a gourmet version of the simple carrot salad I used to make as a child. Back then, the shredded carrots were tossed with a simple vinaigrette and topped with hard-boiled eggs. It was one of our family’s standard salads – not a week went by without me preparing a batch.

… dressed up with chopped carrot greens, an orange vinaigrette, sweet currants and whole cumin seeds!

This salad, however, puts a new spin on the humble dish. Carrot tops (or greens) are chopped and then tossed with the shredded roots. They contribute another layer of “carrotiness” to the salad, as well as their cheerful green color. The salad is then tossed with an orange-scented vinaigrette and plump currants – both accentuating the carrots’ inherent sweetness. As a last touch, toasted whole cumin seeds are added for a delicious contrast to the sweetness of the dish.

This salad is wonderful served on its own, but it also makes a colorful, tasty side for any antipasti or tapas menu.

Bon appétit!

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Carrots with green tops

Food & wine pairing: Gewürztraminer with carrot salad

White wine icon
A full-bodied, aromatic white wine – like a Gewürztraminer or an off-dry Riesling – is lovely with this exotic salad.

Carrot salad with carrot tops, currants and toasted cumin

serves 4
active time: 20 min

For the vinaigrette

  1. 1/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest (use a microplane grater)
  2. 2 tablespoons orange juice
  3. 1 1/2 tablespoons aged sherry vinegar
  4. 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  6. freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the salad

  1. 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  2. 1 1/4 lbs (565 g) carrots – peeled and finely grated (use the shredding attachment of a food processor)
  3. 1/4 cup currants – soaked in hot water for 10 minutes
  4. 1/2 cup finely chopped young carrot tops

  1. Step 1: To make the vinaigrette – Place all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Whisk until well blended and set aside.
  2. Step 2: Heat a small heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the cumin seeds and cook until they turn a deep golden color and are fragrant — about 2 minutes — shaking the pan continuously and taking care not to burn the spices. Transfer to a small bowl to cool. Place the grated carrots in a large bowl. Drain the currants and add them to the carrots. Add the chopped carrot tops and cumin seeds and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Toss well and serve.

Viviane’s tip
  1. When using carrot tops, I recommend buying organic carrots to avoid eating tops that might have been sprayed with pesticides. If you can’t find carrots with their tops still attached to the roots, then substitute the chopped carrot tops with 1/3 cup of finely chopped Italian parsley or fresh chives.

Carrot salad with carrot tops, currants and toasted cumin

salad, carrot, carrot tops, currants, cumin

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  • Reply mjskit November 2, 2015 at 3:20 am

    What a great carrot salad! Love the addition of cumin, and how clever of you to add the carrot tops!

  • Reply El October 25, 2015 at 2:01 pm

    I never think of carrot salad. This recipe looks great. Really light and refreshing. Perfect for lunch!

  • Reply Deb|EastofEdenCooking October 20, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    My mom made carrot salad too! Your version is so much better, the vinaigrette and carrot tops bring out the fresh veggie flavor we crave!

  • Reply Liz October 16, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    It’s been years since I’ve made a carrot salad! I love that you added dried fruit—and the vinaigrette sounds divine!

    • Reply Viviane Bauquet Farre October 19, 2015 at 12:44 pm

      Thanks, Liz! I’m so glad you love the currants and vinaigrette… they do give this humble salad a delicious flavor.

  • Reply lisaiscooking October 15, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    Adding the tops is such a great idea! Love the orange vinaigrette too. Can’t wait to put this together.

    • Reply Viviane Bauquet Farre October 19, 2015 at 12:42 pm

      Thank you, Lisa!

  • Reply Evelyne@cheapethniceatz October 14, 2015 at 8:30 pm

    We have all overdosed on that salad in childhood but i so welcome your modernized version with cumin and…Carrot tops ? Great idea and will try soon.

    • Reply Viviane Bauquet Farre October 19, 2015 at 12:41 pm

      I’m so glad to hear, Evelyne. I must say I had my share of carrot salad as a child too!

  • Reply Food to Fitness October 5, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    Wow. This looks great. Thanks for the recipe.

  • Reply Angie@Angie's Recipes September 21, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    We love carrots..raw, or in salad, or soup, roasted…can’t get enough of it. Your gourmet carrot salad looks delightful!

    • Reply Viviane September 21, 2013 at 12:37 pm

      Angie! I am with you on that… Thank you so much for your lovely comment. Here’s the the humble carrot!

    Question or comment? I'd love to hear from you!