Tuesday, 25 September 2012

The peace salad

"Peaces" of carrot

I love kitchen gadgets. I can spend hours inside a kitchen store. I can’t have enough of serving bowls, of all sizes. When I travel, I like bringing back a serving bowl that will remind me of the place I visited and add an exotic touch to my dinner parties.

Three weeks ago, my friends Tania and Roy came to see us with their kids. Tania brought as a gift from Israel a beautiful serving bowl with a recipe for a carrot salad written on the bottom. I asked her to translate the recipe for me -  I was looking forward to make it the next day.

In one of my recent visits to Planet Organic I bought the Faitrade Zaytoun Palestinian olive oil. So, I had a chance to bring together the flavours of the two countries and promote peace in my kitchen.
  
There was no disagreement for Dean, Nina and I: the carrot salad was a winner.

Thanks T!


My lovely gift
The ingredients
Steam the carrots until tender
marinate the onion and garlic
My delicious spicy carrot and onion salad


Carrot peace salad
Serves 4

An easy recipe packed with good nutrients. The smoked and spicy paprika adds a special flavour. This salad contains a great amount of vitamin C.

INGREDIENTS

5 organic seasonal carrots
1 small red onion
1 garlic, crushed
30ml of extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lime or lemon
A handful of coriander
½ tsp smoked Spanish paprika, hot
Sea salt and black pepper to season

METHOD

Slice the red onion and marinate with lime juice, olive oil, crushed garlic and paprika.
Simmer the carrots until tender. Let it cool.
Place the carrots into a bowl, add the marinated onion, the coriander and mix them gently.
Season and serve.


Some of the ingredients and their health benefits

Carrot (Daucus carota): is high in carotenoid, an antioxidant compound associated with many healthy benefits. They contain lutein and zeaxanthin (carotenoids present in our retina), which is why carrots are famously known for being good for your eyes. The carotenoids and vitamin A contents found in carrots are fat-soluble vitamins - when eaten with a little fat (olive oil, coconut oil, ghee etc) they are better absorbed by your body. Carrots are great for juicing and often chosen as part of detoxification programs. They also provide good levels of vitamin K, fibre, vitamin C, biotin, vitamins B1 and B6.

Paprika (Capsicum annuum): is a type of ground pepper that is in the same family as chili and bell peppers. Paprika is extremely high in vitamin C, which increases the absorption of iron-rich foods. Paprika contains plant enzymes that can neutralize acidity in the stomach, aiding digestion. The peppers used to make paprika contain high levels of the phytochemical capsaicin, which is known for its antioxidant properties. It can help lower the risk of cancer. Capsaicin also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can alleviate arthritis and joint pain, and can  improve blood circulation.

Onion (Allium cepa): belongs to the allium family (leeks, garlic and shallots).  It contains powerful antioxidants and has antiviral properties. It’s also anti-inflammatory, and contains the compound quercetin which supports the immune system and acts as an anti-allergenic. People who suffer from hay fever are often recommended a therapeutic supplement of quercetin - that may help to alleviate their symptoms. Quercetin also improves prostate health. Research has shown that onions help build strong bones and keep serum cholesterol and blood pressure low, preventing heart disease.

Till next week!

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