Roasted Carrot Salad with Apple Cider Dressing


  • 1 16 oz. container of spring lettuce mix
  • 2 bags of Tricolor carrots (2 lbs) from Trader Joes
  • 1 small red onion – thinly sliced
  • 2 fennel bulbs thinly sliced (also known as anise)
  • 1 cup of pine nuts – lightly dry toasted
  • 2 cups of shaved parmesan cheese
  • Dressing:
  • ¾ cup of apple cider or apple juice
  • ¾ cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons of finely minced shallots
  • 1 cup of olive oil
  • 1 or 2 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
  • 1 or 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 or 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper


For the dressing

Mince 4 tablespoons of shallots.

Over medium heat, combine apple juice and apple cider vinegar in a small saucepan. Add the shallots and bring to a boil. Let the mixture reduce by about ¼ and remove from heat. Let cool.

Add mixture to a blender with 1-2 tablespoon of Dijon mustard and 1-2 tablespoons of honey, salt and pepper. Blend mixture.

While it is blending, slowly add one cup of olive oil.

Taste mixture and if it is too tart or salty, add more honey. If it is too sweet, add more Dijon mustard.

Pour into a bottle and refrigerate.

Carrots (night before)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Peel carrots and cut them into 1 inch chunks. Spread them out on a cookie sheet on parchment paper (This salad can feed quite a few people, so consider spreading them out on 2 or 3 cookie sheets).

Roast them until they can be easily pierced with a fork and are starting to brown – it depends on the size of the carrot – anywhere from 10-20 minutes. Remove them from the oven and let them cool to room temperature.

Using a mandolin, thinly sliced the fennel and red onion. Keep them in separate bowls and put them in the fridge. Do not combine them until you put everything in the salad. (You can thinly slice them – it is a lot faster using a mandolin).

In a skillet – pour the pine nuts into the skillet over medium heat and toast the nuts until they are lightly browned. Move the pine nuts around a lot! They will burn very easily!

Each of these things can be prepared the night before and combined with the spring salad mix and parmesan cheese. Right before combining the carrots in the salad, I microwave them until the are slightly warm – about 1 minute.

To assemble the salad:

Reheat the carrots. Bring the salad dressing to room temperature.

Add salad mix to a large bowl. Add carrots, fennel, red onion to the lettuce.

Toss salad with dressing.

Top with parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts. Mix again to distribute the pine nuts and parmesan. Serve immediately.


Source Nikki Harris