Happy birthday to my hubby!
We celebrated the day with a little culinary adventure :). I went to DomaineChandon.com for some out of the ordinary ideas to inspire us. We decided on a menu of Carrot and Hearts of Palm Salad with Kumquats, Cumin Seeds, and Tangerine-Curry Vinaigrette for the first course and Roasted Quail with Israeli Couscous, Black Mission Figs, and Bacon Vinaigrette as the main course. We paired the meal with Chandon Blood Orange Mimosas and one of Rob’s favorite wines by Columbia Winery called Otis Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. Everything was delicious! It truly felt like a gourmet meal at home inspired by the chef from Etoile.
The carrot salad was so unique and a surprising flavor combination that I would highly recommend! I would have never imagined cumin, kumquats, carrots and curry could meld together so nicely. If you’d like a salad that is very much off the beaten path, I hope you’ll give this a try! It would be great for the upcoming holidays, as well. If you can find purple and pink carrots, it is even more special :).
Carrot and Hearts of Palm Salad with Kumquats, Cumin Seeds, and Tangerine-Curry Vinaigrette
1 tbsp cumin seeds
10 medium carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips or ribbons about 2 in/5 cm long (about 4 cups/570 g)
1 can (14 oz/400 g) hearts of palm, rinsed, drained, and cut into thin strips or ribbons about 2 in/5 cm long
6 kumquats, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut crosswise into thin slices
3 tbsp finely diced red onion
1/3 cup/10 g minced fresh cilantro/fresh coriander, plus sprigs for garnish
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup/60 ml fresh tangerine juice or orange juice
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp curry powder
Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a small frying pan over medium heat, toast the cumin seeds, stirring frequently, until fragrant, 3–4 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the carrots, hearts of palm, kumquats, red onion, minced cilantro/coriander, and cumin seeds. Toss gently to mix.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, tangerine juice, vinegar, mustard, and curry powder until the dressing thickens and all the ingredients are thoroughly blended.
Pour the dressing over the carrot mixture and toss thoroughly to coat evenly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among salad plates, garnish with the cilantro sprigs, and serve at once.