You thought I was gone, didn’t you? Gone as in not writing here any longer. Not posting recipes, or photos, or recording notes of what I’ve made.
I’m sure someone somewhere has deemed such negligence to be a blogging foul and most likely written a post about it listing the “Top Ten Things Not to Do” in blogging. But I’m here, not intentionally avoiding writing, but busy with other things and enjoying every minute of it.
It feels exactly like a vacation.
Chalk it up to amazing summer weather — weather that completely makes up for what we didn’t have last year. Clear skies, warm days, almost no humidity. Night breezes through open windows with a hint of salt in the air reminding me there’s an ocean not too far away.
I’ve not been lolling about, however.
My oldest niece asked me to make her wedding cake, and since I’ve not made one before, it’s been the excuse du jour to obsess over details — some important, and some not so much.
I’ve continued to behave like a DIY groupie on the patio project with my husband who has finally had time to help with the work. He mixes cement and I set the stones on the planter tops, making progress more quickly than I’m able to by myself. Bathroom towel bars have been replaced sans appropriate tools, dust has been wiped from my ancient sewing machine to make drapes for my office of fabric I purchased months and months ago, and boxes of things I saved for a reason I’ve forgotten have been sorted. At this point, cooking would be far easier.
I have done some cooking, but mostly uninvolved salads or pasta wedged between wedding cake experimentation, forced by lemon cake that wasn’t lemony enough according to taste testers.
Not so perfect.
When I was tired of having my head in the cake world, we’d get sandwiches from our favorite deli on the way to or from the beach after a rare walk, or before watching a not so rare sunset. We’ve sampled some of San Diego’s food trucks and taken a bit of a staycation, enjoying Southern California like a tourist might instead of taking it for granted which is something I’ve done for years and years.
Sounds pretty summerish, doesn’t it?
All I need is a hammock, some shade, a beverage and perhaps a bit of this carrot raisin salad I put my own spin on. It’s light, just slightly sweet, and full of fresh crunchiness. Perfect for a picnic anywhere you want to relax.
Hope your summer is going well, too.
Carrot Raisin Salad
salt & pepper
- Prepare the carrots any way you like them — julienned, sliced thin, or shaved into ribbons.
- Slice the green onions and radishes thin as well.
- Sprinkle in some plump raisins and slivers of almonds.
- Add a heaping tablespoon or two of the yogurt and finish with a drizzle of honey. Agave nectar is great, too.
- Season with salt and pepper and toss just until everything is moist with the yogurt.
- Allow to sit covered about 15 – 30 minutes for the flavors to mingle if desired.
- My mother used to make carrot raisin salad for us once in a while when we were growing up and it’s always been a favorite of mine. She’d grate a huge bowl of carrots, add the raisins, a dollop or two of mayo, and give it all a good sprinkle of sugar. A couple of scoops of it was perfect for lunch on a hot summer day. The salad — not the sugar!
- I know many people turn up their noses at a traditional recipe that has been made “lighter,” but honestly, even my mother’s version was much lighter than many of the recipes I see around which contain as much as a cup of mayonnaise and nearly as much sugar.
- I used 0% fat Greek yogurt for this, but the 2% and whole milk versions are equally good. If you like it more creamy, add more yogurt. Your heart, thighs, and abdomen will thank you.
- Carrots are so sweet, adding sugar isn’t necessary, but the honey is a nice touch. Just a drizzle.
- Spicy radishes and onion are a pleasant surprise in this. I love a good combination of sweet and spice.
- Just think of all the calories you’ll burn chewing…