Monday, April 28, 2014

3 Gifts Orange

a mayonnaise-free carrot slaw (recipe to follow)

Today's Joy Dare from Ann Voskamp is to be thankful for "3 Gifts Orange."

I am thankful for Carrots. I am thankful for my carrot-shaped serving dish. And I am thankful for mandarin oranges, both fresh and canned.

I still remember the very first canned mandarin oranges I ever had. It was the Christmas season and we were attending church in Long Beach, California. I was somewhere around twelve years old.  After church one Sunday, several families decided to go to a smorgasbord  for lunch.  

We don't hear that word much any more, smorgasbord, and I'm pretty sure I had to ask my parents what that was.  We now know it to be an "all-you-can-eat" buffet.  

Anyway, they had these miniature orange slices that were so tender and sweet and I immediately added them to my list of favorite foods.  To this day I love them, and whenever I open a can of them I have to take a test sample to be sure they are as good as the last can.  

I also like the fresh mandarin oranges, or "cuties" as they are called in the produce department. And cutie they are!

But back to my carrot slaw in the carrot-shaped serving dish.  My readers may remember that I served this with our Easter dinner this year.  One of our guests does not like mayonnaise, so I did some research to find a carrot slaw that does not call for the white stuff.  We enjoyed it so much that I think I'll include this flavorful and colorful dish every year alongside our Easter ham.

Carrot Slaw for Easter (makes 6 servings)

1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoon chopped flat leaf Italian parsley
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 bag (10 oz.) shredded carrots
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 small red onion, chopped
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted

To make the dressing, combine olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, salt and sugar in a small bowl.  Set aside.

In a larger bowl, combine the shredded carrots, dried cranberries, onion, and almonds.  Add the dressing.  Cover and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.  This salad improves over time.

Be sure to toast the almonds.  Most recipes calling for nuts are made more flavorful when the nuts are toasted beforehand.

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