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SPICY CARROT + QUINOA SALAD WITH COCONUT LIME DRESSING

A couple months back, Gilt Taste invited a handful of food bloggers to review and cook with products from their site and I couldn’t be more thrilled to participate. Last week I received a box of gorgeous, perfect produce from Farmer Jones Farm – Gilt Taste’s Chef’s Tasting Box.

Filled with the most charming carrots, tiny potatoes, micro-greens, edible flowers, fresh herbs, beets and tender, uncured garlic, it was such a fun and creative challenge to consider how to develop the ingredients into a handsome recipe. Doing this brought me back to the creative place that fueled the Seasonal Food Guides – a process of thinking and considering, of addition and subtraction, of strategizing and speculation.

What I landed on was this salad. I’m enamored with the flavors of Thai cooking right now and had originally considered a more straightforward curry – something whose heat and coziness would be perfect this time of year. But the produce was in such perfect form by itself that I didn’t want to mess with it too much. I considered translating the flavors of a curry into a dressing – hanging on to the coconut milk (a great starting point for a dressing), the curry paste, the lime, cilantro, mint and green onion and putting it to work with the carrots, microgreens and a little quinoa for heft. And here we are. It is indeed spicy – so those with a sensitive palate might want to hold back on the red chile flakes.

SPICY CARROT + QUINOA SALAD WITH COCONUT LIME DRESSING
Serves 4

For the salad:

6 medium carrots, julienned
1 cup rinsed micro-greens
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 cup cooked quinoa
2 tablespoons fresh, minced cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh, minced mint
1 small bunch spinach
edible flowers for garnish, optional

For the dressing:

1/4 cup coconut milk (use one with full fat content)
1 teaspoon lime zest
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon Thai green curry paste
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes, optional

First, make the dressing. Whisk together the coconut milk, lime zest and lime juice. Add the green curry paste and dissolve with a fork or the back of a spoon until thoroughly incorporated. Add the sugar, salt and chile flakes and blend thoroughly. Set aside.

To make the salad, combine the carrots, micro-greens, green onions, quinoa, cilantro and mint. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss.

Divide the spinach between four plates. Top with the salad. Garnish with edible flowers if desired.

  • Elizabeth - What a perfect winter salad–definitely inspiring! And so dressy with the flowers and all. This is exactly the kind of thing I’ve promised myself to make for lunch, but somehow I always end up with a cheese sandwich instead.ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie @ okie dokie artichokie - That looks so flavorful! Even though it’s cold and blustery out and all I want to do is wrap myself up and sip on hot soup, there are many times where a bright and vibrant salad like this is just what I need to perk me up on those dark days. Lovely!ReplyCancel

  • Tine - These edible flowers are so beautiful in this salad…ReplyCancel

  • leela - gorgeous images and lovely recipe! can’t wait to try.

    xReplyCancel

  • NicoleD - You make the prettiest salads! Love the pop of pink and red from the edible flowers.ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth @ Saffron Lane - This is just gorgeous (especially for a cold, late fall day), Kimberley!ReplyCancel

  • Hannah - Oooo…I’m intrigued by that dressing. This will get me out of my vinaigrette rut! Very nice.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - I love seeing what every one is doing with this bounty. Your dressing sounds amazing and my oh my are those photos ever pretty! Lovely, K.ReplyCancel

  • SG - How amazing! What a treat to get that lovely goodie box! Very much looking forward to trying this… Just today I was thinking that I should get off the soup for a bit and make a delicious salad. Perfect!ReplyCancel

  • Sharyn Dimmick - I love the flavors in this. Now I just need to lose the quinoa (can’t stand the stuff, but I can easily make salad without it).ReplyCancel

  • Lynda - How beautiful. I love the thai spin in the dressing. Congratulations!ReplyCancel

  • Cookie and Kate - I absolutely loved opening up my google reader to discover several wonderful recipes on my favorite blogs using produce from The Chefs Garden! I got to visit the farm and tour the greenhouse a couple of months ago (you can see photos on my blog). It’s a beautiful place. And this salad! It looks incredible. Now I’m craving those delicious Thai flavors. :)ReplyCancel

  • Kelsey - Beautiful. All of the Gilt posts today are so colorful and vibrant. Definitely putting the dressing on my list.ReplyCancel

  • nicole franzen - yummy! love thisReplyCancel

  • Kasey - I, too, have really enjoyed seeing all of the colorful Gilt creations. Lovely to see you back in full force! xoReplyCancel

  • Brian @ A Thought For Food - This is what winter cooking should be… bright and bold! How marvelous this looks!ReplyCancel

  • kickpleat - Gorgeous photos as always! This salad looks gorgeous and I love the sound of the dressing. Nice work, lady!ReplyCancel

  • Brian @ A Thought For Food - Those edible flowers are gorgeous! What a lovely refreshing dish.ReplyCancel

  • Megan Gordon - Like Hannah, I’m in a dressing rut and eager to try this! Thanks for the inspiration and beautiful photos, Kimberly.ReplyCancel

  • Season with Reason (Rebecca) - That photo warmed me up on this dreary December morning. It’s perfectly seasonal but also reminds me of crisp salads on a summer afternoon. Happy New Year to you!ReplyCancel

  • The Wimpy Vegetarian - This is just beautiful!!! And I love how this salad and dressing sounds. I’m making it this week!ReplyCancel

  • TM - Hello,

    I was thinking about purchasing the Gilt produce box you received can you please tell me how it compares to a box containing the below. This organic box cost $44 & is delivered locally. Since the Gilt box costs double, I want to make sure it’s actually double the produce :-)

    2 lb Our Farm Purple Top Turnip
    1.5 lb Klamath French Fingerling Potato
    1 cnt Our Farm Green Romanesco
    1 bu Our Farm Bunched Collard
    1 bu Our Farm Bunched Leeks
    1 cnt Our Farm Head Radicchio
    1 bu Brawley Assorted Chard
    1 cnt Brawley Leaf Lettuce
    1 bu Bakersfield Bunched Carrot
    1 bu Brawley Bunched Spinach
    1 cnt Brawley Fresh Cauliflower
    1 cnt Brawley Red Radish
    1 cnt Our Farm Bunched Broccoli
    1 lb Capay Loose Rutabaga
    1 lb Capay Root CeleryReplyCancel

  • thai coconut quinoa salad. - […] Taking some of my favourite healthy ingredients, I decided to incorporate some of those beautiful flavours Thai flavours I mentioned above. I found an absolutely stunning recipe for a Quinoa Salad & Coconut Lime Dressing on this beautiful blog. […]ReplyCancel

  • Amber - I made this tonight and really enjoyed it. I wanted to add more protein so I marinated a chicken breast in the dressing and served that with the salad. It’s super tasty; I’m looking forward to taking the leftovers to work for lunch tomorrow.ReplyCancel

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