Carrot Pasta with A Creamy Zesty Garlic Sauce

Carrot noodle salad is creamy without dairy. The peanut butter vinaigrette with garlic and ginger gives a zip but balance.
Carrot pasta with a creamy zesty garlic sauce pinit

About This Carrot Pasta/Noodle Recipe

Carrot “noodle”, can we call them Ca-noodles?  This Ca-noodle salad combines the creaminess of a peanut vinaigrette with garlic and ginger for a flavorful, bright, and crunchy salad with no dairy. The creaminess comes from the vinaigrette and, as presented, is vegan as well.

Carrot pasta with a creamy zesty garlic sauce

What You Need for This Carrot Pasta Recipe

Ca-noodle Ingredients

Ingredient Notes

  • Carrot noodles: Orange carrots or rainbow carrots are both great here. They need to be the long carrots; baby carrots won’t work for the long noodles in this dish. We peeled ours, but feel free to leave the peels on if you prefer.
  • Mandoline or vegetable peeler: Either of these tools is necessary to make the long noodles of the carrots.
  • Tamed garlic: Tamed garlic is easy to make. It offers the great flavor of garlic without the harsh, acerbic notes.
  • Peeled garlic cloves: A garlicky dish needs a garlicky punch, and this is where it comes from. A little goes a long way.
  • Apple cider vinegar: A mild-flavored vinegar is the key here. Rice wine vinegar is also good. Avoid powerful vinegars such as balsamic or red wine vinegar.
  • Teriyaki sauce: Teriyaki brings saltiness and citrus notes. That adds depth to the flavor.
  • Lime juice: Lime juice adds a bright acid note. The acid also helps soften the ca-noodle overnight.
  • Tamed garlic puree: This is the main garlic flavor. Because it is subdued, it provides a smooth flavor and marries well with the peanut butter.
  • Raw garlic: This is the zip and zest of the dish. If you fancy the raw garlic flavor, add more. Garlic flavor does increase overnight.
  • Raw ginger root: This is the backup zip and zest to this dish. As with the garlic, if you like the heat from raw ginger, add more.
  • Natural peanut butter: Emulsified peanut butter makes an thicker vinaigrette. That’s not necessarily bad.  Emulsified peanut butters often come with sugar added and more ingredients. If you prefer just the peanuts, use natural. If your grocery store has a station for you to grind your own, that’s often cheaper and fresher.
  • Peanut oil: Peanut oil makes sense for the flavor. It has a mild flavor and is compatible with the flavors added.
  • Black and white sesame seeds: These offer aesthetics and a bit of a crunch and almost no flavor. But, they do look pretty.
  • Scallions: The fresh raw of scallion greens is both attractive and a boost for flavor.
  • Chopped peanuts: A common-sense addition for looks and flavor and texture.
  • Caraway seeds: Caraway is in the carrot family. These seeds aren’t necessary but do offer a nice backup flavor and texture to the ca-noodle salad.

Ingredient Substitutions

  •  Rainbow carrots are perfect here. The variety of color makes a wonderful presentation.
  •  Rice wine vinegar is a good alternative here.
  •  Teriyaki sauce can be replaced with soy sauce or fish sauce.
  •  Dry garlic powder can be used if cloves of garlic are hard to find. Check your grocery store’s freezer section for frozen raw garlic paste.
  •  Dry ginger can be used, but will not have the same zip that raw ginger provides.
  •  If you have a nut allergy, sunflower seed butter and avocado oil are good alternatives.
  •  Toasted sunflower seeds also replace the chopped peanuts.

FAQs

Can I eat the Ca-noodle salad right away?

Yes, but letting the salad rest overnight in the refrigerator will help soften the carrot noodles and let the flavors build.

I don’t have a mandolin or a vegetable peeler. What can I use?

A box grater can make some uniform carrot pieces that will marinade nicely in the vinaigrette. They aren’t long like mandolin cuts. The chief issue here is only presentation.

What else can I do with the vinaigrette?

This is perfect for a dip for chicken fingers, especially grilled chicken. Also, use the vinaigrette as a dip for vegetables or even dress Romaine lettuce.

How long will ca-noodle salad last?

Ca-noodle salad will keep its fresh, bright color and flavor for three days.

What else can I serve with the ca-noodles?

Grilled or smoked tofu, grilled chicken, or steaks are good main course ideas for the ca-noodle salad.

Carrot Pasta with A Creamy Zesty Garlic Sauce

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 30 min Rest Time 24 hour Total Time 24 hrs 30 mins

Description

Carrot noodle salad is creamy without dairy. The peanut butter vinaigrette with garlic and ginger gives a zip but balance. The carrots keep their crunch and color. We eat with our eyes first and this dish is stunning to see and great to eat. You’ll love how easy it is to make and it keeps well for several days.

Servings: 2

Ingredients

Ca-noodle salad

Peanut butter vinaigrette

How To Make Carrot Pasta Step By Step

  1. Blanch the peeled garlic cloves

    Place the peeled garlic cloves in a small pot with cold water. Cut the wee woody ends off the garlic cloves. When the water boils, drain the garlic. Return the garlic to the pot, add more cold water and boil again. Drain and repeat and let the garlic cool.

    boil garlic
  2. Toast the caraway seeds

    Toast caraway seeds
  3. Grate the ginger and garlic on the Microplane

    Grated ginger
  4. Mandolin or peel the carrot noodles

    Carrot noodles Mandoline

    Carrot ribbons with peeler

  5. Assemble the vinaigrette ingredients into the mixing bowl

    Vinaigrette ingredients
  6. Mix the vinaigrette dressing

  7. Combine the sesame seeds, caraway seeds, carrot noodles with the vinaigrette

    Ingredients in the bowl
  8. Place in a bowl and store overnight in the cooler

    Wrapped bowl ready to chill
  9. Plate and garnish with cilantro leaves, chopped peanuts, and black and white sesame seeds

    Finished Dish

Note

  • This dish uses a mandoline. A mandoline is a great tool for slicing vegetables, but it can cut fingers, too. Once the dish is assembled, the flavors may seem subdued. This salad needs at least one night in the cooler to let the flavors develop.
  • Ca-noodle salad isn’t too intensive to prep. The best way to make efficient use of your time is to slice the carrots while the garlic is being tamed. Grate the ginger and raw garlic on a Microplane or chop to a near pulp with a French knife.
  • Using a mandolin is dangerous. Cuts can happen very easily. Take your time and don’t take chances. Vegetable peeler ribbons are also very attractive and with much less risk to you of being cut.
  • If you like a real punch of garlic, increase the raw garlic. As presented, this is quite garlicky but also balanced with the other flavors. Be as bold as you can stand and add red pepper flakes or Sambal Oelek for some real zip.
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