Thai Carrot Salad

Spring has sprung in Annabel Langbein’s Wanaka garden and she’s already picking the first crisp snow peas of the season to use in a zingy Thai Carrot Salad. She heads off in her trusty yellow truck to meet an artisan chocolate maker, then invites her new friend back for an Asian-inspired dinner of caramelised pork belly with ginger miso greens and sticky rice. And what could be better for dessert than silky chocolate and orange pots made using artisan chocolate and oranges from Annabel’s courtyard garden?
Prep time:15 mins
Serves: 6 – 8 as a starter


  • 2 short red thai chillies, very finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp soft brown sugar or palm sugar
  • 1 tbsp dried shrimps
  • 16 snow peas or beans, cut into 2cm lengths
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • 5 large carrots or 2 green papaya, shredded
  • 4 tbsp lime juice, or more to taste
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce, or more to taste
  • cabbage or lettuce leaves, to serve
  • ½ cup chopped roasted peanuts, to serve


  1. Place chillies, garlic, sugar and dried shrimps in a large bowl or mortar and crush or pound to break up to a semi-paste texture.
  2. Add snow peas or beans and tomatoes and pound a few times to combine evenly.
  3. Mix in carrots or papaya, lime juice and fish sauce, adjusting to taste with more lime or fish sauce as preferred.
  4. To serve, place cabbage or lettuce leaves on serving plates and top with salad and a sprinkling of peanuts.


This cruncy salad makes a perfect starter or side dish with an Asian menu. To turn this into a meal, stir through cooked prawn tails or two finely sliced cooked chicken breasts just before serving.

This recipe is from my book The Free Range Cook: Through the Seasons