Orange Blossom Minted Carrot Raisin Salad

"I love traditional carrot raisin salad ... but I always hated that some people use WAY too much mayo. You could hardly taste the carrots which were the main ingredient. So I found this a few years ago, and it has become my favorite, especially since I live in FL, it has great orange flavor. This is originally a Whole Foods Recipe, but it has been passed around quite a bit, so there have been some changes; however, I can't claim any rights to this - but it is such a light refreshing recipe. Take advantage of those pre-shredded carrots from the produce section, I definitely do (but you can always shred your own, especially if you grow them in your garden). A few grocery store items and you are set. As there is no mayo in this dish, it makes a great BBQ dish or potluck salad because it travels well. I always garnish with a couple of orange slices to remind people of what the main flavor is. And ... Orange Blossom Water? ... What do I use it in? Why bother buying a whole bottle? Well, I originally bought it for this salad, but I have used it over seafood, in teas (warm and cold), rice, and drizzled over grilled vegetables which is great. It can be purchased online, at Whole Foods and many other Health Food Markets, also any Asian Markets. It is a great addition to your condiment collection."
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Ready In:
6-8 Side servings




  • Dressing -- Mix all the ingredients (except the mint) in a small bowl or measuring cup. Mix well to combine. Set half of the orange that you sliced as a garnish off to the side.
  • Salad -- In a medium bowl, add the carrots and both raisins and mix well to combine. Toss with 1/2 of the dressing and check for seasoning (salt and pepper). Add a bit more of the dressing, but save a little to add right before you serve. Cover well with saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • Serve -- Before serving, toss well, and add in the pecans, mint and the reserved dressing if necessary. I like to plate and garnish with some of the orange slices. ENJOY!

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<p>Growing up in Michigan, I spent my summers at my cottage in the Northern part up by Traverscity. On a lake, big garden which had all the vegetables you could imagine. My mom taught school, so summers were our vacation time. Gramps and I fished all the time so fresh fish was always on the menu, perch, blue gill, walleye and small and large mouth bass. At age 5 I learned how to clean my own fish and by 10 I was making dinner, canning vegetables and fruits, making pies and fresh breads. Apples fresh picked every fall, strawberries in June and July, Cherries at the Cherry Festival in Traverscity. So fresh foods always were a big part. Mom worked as a teacher during the year so dinner was more traditional with pot roasts, meatloaf, etc, but it seemed we always had fresh fruits and vegetables as part of the meal. Mom also didn't use as many spices as I do, but times were different back then. <br /> <br />So ... My motto is ... There is NO Right and NO Wrong with cooking. So many people thing they have to follow a recipe. But NO ... a recipe is a method and directions to help and teach someone. Cooking is about personal tastes and flavors. I love garlic ... and another person may not. I like heat ... but you may not. Recipes are building blocks, NOT text ground in stone. Use them to make and build on. Even my recipes I don't follow most times --They are a base. That is what cooking is to me. A base of layer upon layer of flavors. <br /> <br />I still dislike using canned soups or packaged gravies/seasoning ... but I admit, I do use them. I have a few recipes that use them. But I try to strive to teach people to use fresh ingredients, they are first ... so much healthier for you ... and second, in the end less expensive. But we all have our moments including me. <br /> <br />So, lets see ... In the past, I have worked as a hostess, bartender, waitress, then a short order cook, salad girl in the kitchen, sort of assistant chef, head chef, co owner of a restaurant ... now a consultant to a catering company/restaurant, I cater myself and I'm a personal chef for a elderly lady. I work doing data entry during the day, and now and then try to have fun which is not very often due to my job(s). <br /> <br />I have a 21 year old who at times is going on 12, aren't they all. Was married and now single and just trying to enjoy life one day at a time. I'm writing a cookbook ... name is still in the works but it is dedicated to those people who never learned, to cook. Single Moms, Dads, or Just Busy Parents. Those individuals that think you can't make a great dinner for not a lot of money. You can entertain on a budget and I want people to know that gourmet tasting food doesn't have to be from a can of soup or a box, and healthy food doesn't come from a drive through. There are some really good meals that people can make which are healthy and will save money but taste amazing. So I guess that is my current goal. We all take short cuts and I have no problem with that - I do it too. I volunteer and make food for the homeless every couple of months, donating my time and money. I usually make soup for them and many times get donations from a local grocery stores, Sams Club, Walmart etc, with broth, and vegetables. It makes my cost very little and well worth every minute I spend. Like anyone, life is always trying to figure things out and do the best we can and have fun some how along the way.</p>
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