~ Copper Carrot Coins: A Super-Simple Side-Dish ~
Our garden is beginning to wane. The cherry, peach and plum trees are bare. Our cucumbers and zucchini are gone. The tomatoes have all be eaten or processed into sauce and I'm back to buying lettuce in the grocery store. Butternut squash, pumpkins and cabbage will be at their peak in a week or two, and, then it will be time to enjoy the Fall and prepare to Winterize!
In the meantime, Joe picked a basket full of fine-looking peppers yesterday: bell, jalapeno, hot wax and poblanos -- enough of all to keep me busy for a few days. For some reason, this refreshing, cold side-dish salad came to mind today. When I was growing up, I always wondered why it made an appearance at our annual end-of-Summer Labor-Day picnic. Now I know the answer: dad's vegetable garden was full of bell peppers at the end of the Summer!
This is not a "rocket science" recipe. It is straight out of the 1950's-60's era that I grew up in. You all know that I am not a "cream of any kind of canned soup kinda gal", but, you wouldn't know it from this photo. It seems I've managed to accumulate my share of Cambell's cookbooks over the years (as I quietly chuckle)!
That being said, when it comes to Campbell's condensed tomato soup, I maintain a soft spot in my heart. Who doesn't remember a bowl of their steaming hot cream-of-tomato soup with an ooey-goey grilled cheese sandwich for lunch on a cold Winter's day!
This "oldie but goodie" recipe has been around the block a lot of times, and, pundits are going to say what they always say, but, I don't care what they say. I love this salad and this is my blog:
Why do I think this recipe is blog worthy? I grew up eating carrots without argument because of it and so did my three boys. From any standpoint and level of culinary expertise: that means it is a hell-of-a good recipe. It's also not a recipe readily found, unless you have some vintage cookbooks in your library. Want to try making it using other tomato products (tomato sauce, and/or puree, etc.)? Knock yourself out then get over it...
There's no substitute for the tomato soup in this recipe, so...
8 ounces yellow or sweet onion, halved and very-thinly sliced, slices cut in half lengthwise
8 ounces green bell pepper "julienne" ("cut into thin strips"), strips cut in half lengthwise
1 10 3/4-ounce can condensed tomato soup
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
freshly ground sea salt and peppercorn blend, for garnish
* Note: In kitchen terminology, the verb "coin" means to create a coin shape, either by stamping (like dough with a round cookie cutter), or, slicing a long cylindrical object (like a carrot) with a knife.
Even with the simplest of recipes one can always learn a new word or a word for a specific technique!
~ Step 1. Prep the carrots as directed placing them in a 4-quart saucepan as you work. Add enough cold water to cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Adjust heat to a steady simmer, partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer, until carrots are just fork tender, but still firm and slightly undercooked or "to the tooth", about 4-5 minutes. I like mine after 4 minutes. Do not overcook the carrots!
~ Step 2. Drain as much water as possible from saucepan into sink. Immediately add very cold tap water to carrots in pan. This will halt the cooking process and cool them to below room temperature. Drain carrots into colander and set aside.
... Gradually, and in a thin steady stream vigoursly whisk in the oil...
... and continue to whisk until the mixture is smooth, thickend, satiny and emulsified. This process will take about 1- 1 1/2 minutes.
Cover and refrigerate, several hours to overnight and up to 3-5 days prior to serving. Serve cold. This "oldie but goodie recipe" is a truly wonderful end-of-Summer side-dish bursting full of Fall color!
Special Equipment List: vegetable peeler; cutting board; chef's knife; 4-quart saucepan w/lid; colander; whisk; large rubber spatula; large slotted spoon (for serving)
Cook's Note: This side-dish salad evolved from another Cambell's original recipe. The marinade was actually intended to be a salad dressing. It's got a great history, and a personal story too. My brother adored it atop iceberg lettuce. You can find my recipe for ~ My Homemade Tomato French Salad Dressing ~ in Categories 2, 8, 9, 10, 17 or 20!
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2013)