I was looking for something nice to do with carrots yesterday, found this recipe and adapted it slightly.  We didn’t have the coarse-grain mustard or the honey so we left both out and thought it was still nice.   I like to make up large bowls of salady things like this in the summer, to keep in the fridge for dipping into at mealtimes.  Who wants to spend all evening in the kitchen when the weather’s so nice…

For 2 people (with plenty of leftover dressing):

4 medium carrots
2 tbs sesame seeds
For the dressing:
1 large clove garlic, crushed
Large pinch freshly ground black pepper
1-3 teaspoons of raw honey (optional)
3 heaped dsp coarsegrain mustard (optional) – if you are gluten-intolerant, make sure you check the label!!
400ml virgin cold-pressed sunflower or sesame oil.  Dont be temped to use toasted sesame oil, the burnt flavour will be far too strong.
200ml red or white wine vinegar (or you could use apple cider vinegar).
200ml extra virgin olive oil

  1. First toast the seeds on a dry pan over a medium heat, shaking every so often, until slightly golden.  Remove from the heat.
  2. Put the dressing ingredients in a large screwtop jar and shake well to mix.
  3. Grate the carrots, add the seeds and enough of the dressing to moisten the whole lot.  Stir and serve. 

Why this is good for you:
Carrots are a brilliant source of carotenes which help protect your eyesight and also give your skin a golden glow, making you look more suntanned.  They also help your skin protect itself against UV rays, like a sort of edible sunblock.  Raw, unheated (virgin) sesame and sunflower oil are high in omega 6, which helps balance your hormones for increased energy, better mood and even smoother, more moisturised skin.  It’s even helpful in reducing PMS.  Extra virgin olive oil, while not high in omega 6, is packed full of vitamin E which moisturises your skin from within.  Vitamin E helps your body conserve and reuse the vitamin C you get in your diet – increasing its benefitial effects.  Vitamin E from olive oil also has an anti-allergy effect.  This means it can help reduce symptoms of hayfever, asthma and skin allergies.  Mustard is a spice andlike most spices has antioxidant properties linked to slowing ageing, soothing inflammatory conditions and balancing your immune system.