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Carrots and Lime Zest Up Your Meal

Salads are a traditional dish often served at the beginning of a meal. But there are so many different kinds of salads that they really can fit in anywhere.

This particular Carrot Avocado Salad will go nicely as a side dish. Carrots are a wonderful vegetable with their distinctive color and lovely sweet, crunchy flavor.

Carrots originated in Holland and, it is said, up until about 500 years ago were always purple.  Has anyone seen a purple carrot in their lifetime?  Carrots are quite nutritious containing large amounts vitamin A and decent amounts of B3, C and E.  If you eat them raw they also contain potassium, calcium, iron and zinc; but these are partially destroyed when cooked.

So be sure to add raw carrots to your salads.

When buying carrots organic is particularly important as they will have a much finer flavor than non-organic.  Also, look for very thin carrots with the top greens still attached.  They will keep in your refrigerators vegetable drawer for several days.

Valuable nutrients lie just below the skin in carrots.  So when preparing for cooking or eating raw follow these guidelines.  If they are young and pencil thin just scrub them.  Older bigger carrots can be scraped with a knife or peeled.  Don’t forget to nip off each end.

To boil carrots cut them into the shape you want, such 1/8” to 1/4” slices cut on the bias, (at an angle).  Boil a pot of water with a little salt and a touch of sugar.  Drop in your carrots being careful not to splash yourself.  Cook them for the time it takes to be aldente, still slightly crunchy.  Remove to a colander to drain. For this recipe stop the cooking process by placing them in an ice water bath for just a few minutes. Then drain them again.

Carrot Avocado Salad

Serves 4

2 limes, zested then juiced 

3 Tbl extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbl agave nectar, (or honey)

1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp dry mustard

1 1/4 lb carrots

1avocado, small diced

3 green onions, cleaned and chopped

Salt to taste

Fresh ground pepper to taste

Lightly toss the avocado dice with 1/2 of the lime juice.

Place the rest of the lime juice in a small pot with the extra virgin olive oil, agave nectar, lime zest, red pepper and dry mustard. Heat until hot, remove from heat and let stand.

Cook carrots according to the paragraph above. When cooled pat dry and add them to a large mixing bowl. Toss carrots with the warm dressing; add salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. Lightly toss with the avocado and place in a serving bowl. Garnish with the chopped green onion.

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