early summer crudités on ice with aïoli recipe

Early summer crudités

Fill a large flat bowl with ice and pile on all the youngest, most tender veg you can buy or pick. Serve them with aïoli and perhaps some crème fraîche, with a handful of dill. The ice will keep the veg fresh and crunchy and the whole thing looks and tastes fantastic. This makes great simple party food, ideal for serving lots of people.

serves 6

  • Crushed ice
  • Mixture of early summer vegetables, such as radishes, mini carrots, peas and purple-podded mangetouts

for the aïoli:

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Sea salt
  • 1 whole egg plus 1 extra yolk
  • ½ teaspoon mustard powder
  • Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 275ml oil (I usually use two-thirds sunflower, one-third olive oil)

To make the aïoli, crush the garlic with a pinch of sea salt, using a pestle and mortar. Put the egg and additional yolk into the bowl and add mustard, pepper and half the vinegar.

Whisk these together with a hand mixer or in a food processor, then carefully add the oil in a stream while stirring continuously, until the oil emulsifies and makes a thick, smooth mayonnaise. Adjust the seasoning and stir in more vinegar to taste.

Half-fill a large shallow bowl with ice and lay out the veg on top, with a bowl of aïoli in the middle.

This recipe featured on p.137 of Sarah Raven's Garden Cookbook