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Carrot, Cranberry & Pecan Salad

Fancy joining me in playing the parve salad challenge? Anyone can make salad greens taste good with the addition of tangy cheese, or a creamy dressing, but creating a parve dish with equal appetite appeal is a whole lot harder. Fortunately, after 11 years spent running cooking classes where there was more demand for enticing, parve sides than anything else, I have an extensive repertoire of dairy-free gems to share. This amazing addictive - and laughably easy - Carrot, Cranberry 'n Pecan Salad is a firm favorite. Its robust flavors make it the ideal dish to serve alongside meat, chicken, and BBQ's, and it makes a striking addition to any salad buffet. What's more, it can be made ahead with ease, leftovers can be refrigerated without spoiling and, if you make use of ready shredded carrot, you can cut preparation time to mere minutes. Parve salad challenge completed!

10 to 12 carrots, peeled and cut in matchsticks* 1/2 cup chopped chives 50 - 100g Chinese pecans OR walnuts, chopped 3/4 cup dried cranberries 1/2 cup canola oil 1/4 cup 5% vinegar OR apple cider vinegar 4 tablespoons brown sugar 2 - 3 tablespoons wholegrain Dijon mustard Salt and coarse black pepper 3 cloves crushed garlic. 1: Combine salad ingredients. 2: Whisk dressing ingredients together and dress salad up to 2 hours before serving. COOK'S NOTES: You can grate carrots if you really have to but use a coarse grater. You can also buy ready prepared carrots. Toast walnuts in the oven with a little sugar on top if using instead of Chinese pecans.

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