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Author Notes: This vibrant salad was inspired by the flavors of Moroccan cuisine. The unique wrinkled black Beldi olives from Morocco are worth seeking out for their rich flavor and meaty texture. The briny olives, sweet carrots, hot red pepper flakes, and crunchy sesame seeds make for a well-balanced salad that is delicious alongside roast meats. Feel free to substitute mint for the cilantro if you prefer. The salad can be made ahead of time and travels well for a picnic or potluck.
For the salad
- 2 pounds pounds carrots, washed and peeled
- 3/4 cup oil cured Moroccan black olives, like black Beldi, pitted
- 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
For the vinaigrette
- 1 orange
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1 pinch salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Toast the sesame seeds in a skillet over medium-low heat until fragrant, just a minute or two. Set the toasted sesame seeds aside.
- Using a vegetable peeler, slice the carrots into thin ribbons. Place the carrot ribbons in a bowl with the olives,red pepper flakes, scallions, and sesame seeds.
- Make the vinaigrette. Grate the orange zest into a bowl, then juice the orange. Combine the orange juice and honey in the bowl with the zest. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Whisking continuously, gradually pour in the olive oil.
- Pour vinaigrette over the salad and toss the ingredients to coat. Cover the salad and put it in the fridge to marinate for half an hour. Just before serving, scatter the cilantro over the salad.