Carrot, Dill & White Bean Salad

Carrot, Dill & White Bean Salad Recipe

I bought a single bunch of bushy-topped carrots the other day. At first glance it was a good looking cluster - bright orange in color, vibrant greens still attached. But it was on second glance that I noticed the tiny carrots nestled beside their larger brothers and sisters. Some of the smallest carrots were no thicker than a knitting needle, not much longer than my pinky finger. I snacked on those after a quick rinse. The bigger guys I put to work in this dill-flecked white bean skillet salad. Nothing too complicated - warm, coin-shaped slices of golden, pan-fried carrots, white alubia beans and chopped dill tossed with a tangy-sweet lemon shallot dressing. It tastes good the day you make it, even better the day after. And although it's certainly not as pretty, in my opinion, it might have tasted best on day three as the shallots infused the beans and the lemon mellowed.

Carrot White Bean Salad Recipe

Look for young carrots with their greens still attached - you can get a good sense of whether the bunch is fresh or not. On the bean front, I cooked the alubias from scratch, but you can use well-drained canned white beans if you want to throw this together on a whim.

Carrot, Dill & White Bean Salad Recipe

I like to buy young carrots at the farmers' market - slice them slightly thicker than a banana chip for this salad.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon fine grain salt
1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots

more olive oil (or ghee) for cooking
2 cups sliced carrots, cut 1/4-inch thick on deep bias
3 cups cooked white beans
scant 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or honey)
1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and shallots in a small bowl. Stir and set aside.

In your largest skillet over medium high heat, toss the carrots with a splash of olive oil or a spoonful of ghee (I love ghee with carrots). Let them cook in a single layer - they'll give off a bit of water at first. Keep cooking, tossing gently every three or four minutes until the carrots are deeply browned. All told, about twelve minutes.

Add the beans and dill to the skillet and cook for another five minutes, or until the beans as well heated through. If you are using beans that weren't canned you can allow them to brown a bit as well (just cook a bit longer, and stir less frequently) - they can handle this in a way that most canned beans can't. If you need to add a bit more olive oil to the pan - do so.

Place the contents of the skillet in a large mixing bowl, sprinkle with the brown sugar and pour the 3/4 of the lemon-olive oil mixture over the top. Toss gently. Let sit for ten minutes. Toss gently once again, taste and adjust with more salt or sugar or lemon juice if needed to balance the flavors. Serve warm or at room temperature and finish by sprinkling with the almonds just before serving.

Serves 6 - 8 as a side.

Prep time: 10 minutes - Cook time: 20 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Comments

  • Unless your vendor can assure you that the carrots have been dug within 24 hours of your purchase, those lovely tops are doing nothing but draining the life, moisture and freshness from the carrots. And certainly remove the tops if you are not using the carrots immediately. This is called "marketing" people, because the tops are basically inedible anyway.

    skeip
  • This sounds delicious! Also, made something Heidi-inspired last night (basically mixing recipes) that I think you would like: -soba noodles with the cilantro chile sauce from this recipe (http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/a-tasty-frittata-recipe.html - my bf LOVES it) tossed with blanched broccoli, green onions and sauteed tofu Anyway, thanks for the inspiration and great recipes!

    Melinda
  • I too love buying fresh carrots from the farmers market with the greens on top. This salad is beautiful and I can just imagine how all the flavors come together. I think I might make it for a bbq this weekend. Yum, thanks for the recipe!

    Alison
  • What a flavorful recipe! I love how summer and light it seems.

    Nutmeg Nanny
  • Looks yummy, but I've heard that sugar plus beans equals gastric distress.. Source: Calypso Bean Soup cookbook by Lesa Heebner

    Amy
  • Gorgeous! This sounds like the comfort food I've been craving but never knew I was missing until now! I bet this would be really good in Autumn/Winter as well!

    Jenn
  • what a great way to use those beautiful carrots. i love bean salad type dishes.

    veggievixen
  • Perfect! My husband brought home some gorgeous multi-colored carrots from the farmer's market the other day and I just KNEW you'd have a recipe to make good use of these beauties. Thanks!

    Michelle @ Find Your Balance
  • Heidi, I absolutely love caramelized carrots and, of course, carrots and dill are a classic combination. We'll make this soon. What do you do with the carrot greens? I always feel terrible buying carrots with the greens and then tossing the greens away. I know some people add them to a salad but one try of carrot greens in salad left me unimpressed. I've also seen an article on Chowhound that said that leaving the greens on the carrots causes the carrots to wilt in the refrigerator. Any thoughts?

    Akila
  • I absolutely love buying carrots at the farmer's market. When I first went as a kid, I couldn't believe how many different colored carrots there were. We think of them just as orange, but I'm especially fond of the red, yellow and purple varieties. Some of them taste really peppery.

    isabel
  • I love this dish because of the white beans, they are so small and nutty..I bet the carrots and dill add tons of flavor.

    zoe
  • My aunt makes this incredible baked carrot dish (shredded carrot, cheese cheese cheese, shallot, toasted breadcrumb topping) for every major family gathering and I have been trying to figure out ways to refresh it. Adding something like white beans gives me an entirely different framework and the almonds would give the same toasted crunch without being butter-soaked bread crumbs! A sweeter version would be amazing as well -- maybe caramelize raisins and pineapple with the carrots and omit the onion. oooh and add blackened chilis...

    Kendra
  • The browned carrots must taste like candy, and with the rest of the salad, this sounds great. I haven't cooked alubias before, but now I'll have to look for them.

    lisaiscooking
  • Seriously Heidi...this is amazing. I can almost taste the sweetness of the caramelized carrots in the photograh. It looks delish. As a newbie food blogger/photographer, I def have something to aim for. Great job.

    Reginald @ Ceramic Canvas
  • what are the advantges of this salad and wat are the scientific ingredients in it, and how much is it useful to the young ones

    sajad
  • I love the bushy tops on those carrots - the joys of shopping at farmers markets and not at the supermarket!

    Gourmet Chick
  • I love those tiny carrots!! So cute and they taste so good!!

    délice du jour
  • Really looking forward to trying this, looks beautiful and hearty. ALmonds & carrots, what a combo Thanks! S.

    Sharyn
  • Beautiful colours!

    yaara
  • Molto bella! It's beautiful. This is my favourite kind of salad – fresh, meaty (the beans I mean) and satisfying... I think beans are wholly underutilised in salads.

    Koek!
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