Cooked Carrot Salad with Pine Nuts and Golden Raisins

Carrots are an unappreciated standby. We tend to use them for everything, but rarely highlight them. This dish brings out their sparkle.–Lidia Matticchio Bastianich

LC Carroty Goodness Note

We understand that those bags of baby-cut carrots have a certain time-saving appeal, but don’t let us catch you making this recipe with them. What you want here is the honest taste of carrots fresh from the greenmarket, not the insipid taste of the inside of a plastic bag.

Cooked Carrot Salad with Pine Nuts and Raisins Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 35 M
  • 1 H, 15 M
  • Serves 6 or more


  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots
  • 3 1/2 cups cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely shredded mint leaves


  • 1. Peel and trim the carrots and cut them into 3-inch lengths. Slice each length lengthwise into wedges about 1/3-inch thick.
  • 2. Pour the water and vinegar into a 3- or 4-quart saucepan and set over high heat. Stir in the honey. When the water’s boiling, drop in the carrot wedges and cook, uncovered, at a good bubbling boil for 25 minutes, until cooked through but with some bite. Don’t let them get mushy.
  • 3. Meanwhile, toast the pine nuts in a dry skillet over medium heat tossing them frequently until light gold; spill them onto a plate to cool.
  • 4. When the carrots are cooked, lift them out of the pan with a spider or a slotted spatula and let them cool and drain in a colander placed in the sink. Keep the carrot cooking liquid at a boil. Drop in the raisins and cook until plump, about 5 minute, then lift them out and let them cool and drain, too. Keep the pan of carrot cooking liquid at a boil.
  • 5. Boil the vinegar liquid vigorously and let reduce until only 1/4 cup or so of thick syrup remains in the pan, about 5 minutes. Watch the pan carefully and lower the heat as the liquid level nears the pan bottom. Immediately pour the carrot cooking liquid into a cup or small bowl before it burns.
  • 6. Put the carrots in a bowl, toss with 2 tablespoons syrup and several pinches salt, and let them marinate briefly. Before serving, toss the carrots with 1 tablespoon olive oil, the pine nuts, the raisins, and the shredded mint leaves. Taste and add more salt or oil or syrup if needed. Arrange on a serving platter or on individual plates.
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