Hello and Happy Sunday! Hope you’re having a good weekend. Today I’d like to share this delicious carrot and date salad with an exotic twist.
The recipe inspiration
The recipe inspiration comes from Alya Haq of Natures Anthem Date farm in California’s Coachella Valley. Her date farm was featured in the latest issue of Bon Appatit magazine. An immigrant from Dubai she moved to Coachella Valley decades ago and bought a date farm reminiscent of the supple soft medjool dates she grew up with back in Dbuai. She now distributes over a million pounds of dates each year. Naturesanthem.com
The Moroccan spice rub
The recipe Alya shared with the magazine shows off sweet dates along with roasted carrots that are tossed in a Moroccan spice rub of cumin, coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric, paprika, black pepper, and cloves. Now when I saw these spices I kew right away this was going to be an awesome recipe. I love Moroccan spices. Their aroma is divine!
Alya’s carrot and date salad was served on a bed of creamy Greek yogurt, but I decided to make it into a green salad instead and added in other Middle Eastern ingredients such as feta and olives.
A little of this and a dash of that
I’ll give you my recipe below but folks, spices are meant to be used in a free flowing fashion – a little of this, a dash of that. Get creative, all spices are good!
The spice crusted carrots
The carrots are roasted with the Moroccan spice rub and then roasted on high temps for 20-25 minutes. The spice rub gives the carrots a wonderful flavor that’s so aromatic that I’m sure you could use the spices for chicken or fish. The roasted carrots taste delicious even on their own.
Filling salad for a filling dinner
Between the dense carrots and fiber rich dates this salad is surprisingly filing and makes for a fabulous one-pot meal. Add in avocado, eggs or chickpeas to make it even more hearty.
As fancy as the salad looks it’s actually pretty easy to make. First roast the carrots , then just assemble the salad with the rest of the ingredients.
Moroccan Spice Crusted Carrot and Date Salad
with inspiration from Alya Haq of Natures Anthem Date Farm
1lb medium carrots scrubbed and halved and cut into thick long slices
4 garlic cloves sliced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp paprika or chili powder
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 bag of salad greens of your choice
1 small onion thinly sliced
4-6 dates halved and then quartered
Olives – optional
Feta cheese – optional
Lemon honey mustard dressing
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp mustard
4 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
Roast the carrots: Preheat oven to 450F. In a bowl place the carrots and garlic and toss with all the spices, salt and olive oil. Then spread on a cookie sheet and roast for 20-30 minutes until the carrots are charred and slightly tender. Remove from oven. To the carrots add the dates and mix together. Set aside.
Assemble the salad. In a large bowl or platter place the salad greens. Top with the roasted carrots and dates. Then add the olives onions and feta. Drizzle with the dressing. Add avocado, chickpeas and eggs if you like. Then sprinkle paprika, black pepper and salt.
Salad is ready!
Happy Salad Eating 🥗 !