Being invited to the Barb's Holiday happening means, show up with this Moroccan carrot salad, or risk being excommunicated!! The words are unspoken, given, this salad is a symbol, a flagship of loyalty and friendship. Barb is the type of a typical American Jewish woman, educated, articulate and with big maternal instincts. The type of a woman when you are in need, she, like a storm, will take over and manage your life and your kids will find harbor at her home. A typical American Jewish woman, not a bad way to bel! The recipe is an adaptation from Paula Wolfert's Couscous and other Good Food from Morocco., I follow loosely the measurements especially with the garlic. This salad was a staple at any Israeli wedding before shushi chic weddings took over...I believe it is still a staple at many weddings as well as many household Friday night dinners. My youngest sister is married to a Moroccan guy, it is a tradition in his family, the recipe is a bit different in Israel, with more of a paprika flavor than cumin and heavy handed with the oil. They also use a different slicing method, rather than cubing or dicing, they cut the carrots with a specialty knife, called wavy knife (thanks Shoshi!!). Found at any Bed Bath and Beyond and the likes.
In between the primarily Indian cooking household, curry aromas, caramelizing onions on the stove and plain basmati rice to go with the multitude of curries and bhadgis, my childhood memories are laced with prominent memories of shakshuka my dad always made, decadent crust pizza my sister Ilana, a fourth out of six kids, always made, Israeli salads and petit beurre cocoa and coconut chocolate balls we all chipped in to form. Unlike this recipe we broke the petit beurre by hand not pulsed in a food processor. It gave us more control over the size of the chipped biscuits and therefore the final product appearance. I do not think using a food processor detracts from the final result but you have to be careful not to pulse the biscuit to dust. Half the batch will be finer and half will be more of a rough chop.