Day in and day out things keep moving ahead and while winter threw a recent temper tantrum I’m confident warmer days are coming our way. The windows are open and we are all thinking of our garden or at least of the yummy crisp veggies that will be coming out of them. The yard at our current home is rather hostile to anything other than wild woodland fruits. I try to coax and prod a few herbs here and there but even mint, which many gardeners loathe for its stubborn will to survive and take over, will not take root on our land. So I’m
I don’t know about you but I find vegetables exciting and the anticipation of the snap of a good green bean is enough to start my mouth watering. So for me bringing the “veggie tray” for an Easter gathering isn’t a boring customary afterthought. It’s a celebration of what’s coming. If you are over the horribly boring albeit traditional veggie tray too here a few tips to turn it into a true crudités to rival the meal itself.
For a veggie board to feed a small crowd you will need:
- A Large wooden cutting board or large marble slab. Skip the compartment tray. That kind of organization is better appreciated in closets. We want our veggies to mingle.
- Bowls for
dip. I like to do a small variety of dipping options, normally a hummus and olive oil with herbs. For this tray, I combined the two dips in one bowl by adding hummus to the bowl at an angle like a little beach and filling in the deep side with olive oil and marinated olives with feta.
A linenor two add a nice put together feel to the display.
For The Veggies
You will need about one serving* of vegetables per person for a shorter party. If you’re bringing the tray to a party that you expect to last several hours to all day, one and a half to two servings of veggies per person makes for great all day grazing.
- Green beans. Pick beans with a deep green color. It’s fun to use beans that haven’t been trimmed. Those little bits of stem add some great visual texture.
- Sugar snap peas. Choose peas that have been cleaned of the end and string. I like to use organic but organic peas are never perfect or free off blemishes so don’t worry about a few white spots but do look out for brown discolorations and leave any that look like they are bruised.
- Broccoli. Baby broccoli that
havelong stems and a few leaves are far more interesting than their traditional counterpart.
- Radishes. Choose anything other than red radishes. Seriously. Radishes come in so many colors and levels of
- Carrots. I love using the Les Petites carrots of many colors from Trader Joe’s. They come washed peeled and ready all you have to do is cut them in half and they are the perfect size for dipping.
- Cucumbers. Cucumbers should be firm and have a very fresh scent. Cut English cucumbers into
wegdesin lengths of 4 to 5 inches.
- Tomatoes. Tomatoes are my friend. It seems like people who love tomatoes really love them and people who don’t are crazy. Adding a variety to your tray is a special treat. Cut larger tomatoes into wedges and pre-sprinkle with a bit of flaky sea salt or some of that dukkah from the naan.
- Zucchini. Baby zucchini are great raw. Just like the larger tomatoes you can cut them into wedges and sprinkle with a little salt.
- Fruit. Fruit adds a non-expected twist to your veggie platter. I chose some pears for this tray because they were so sweet smelling and calling my name.
- Naan. A few non-veggie items like naan or a country loaf that can be torn like a tear and share add a certain amount of decadence and interest. For this tray, I toasted the naan for about 5 minutes in a 450-degree oven. Then brushed them with butter and sprinkled on some dukkah spice.
Putting the board together
To put your veggie board together add your dip, oils, and olives to the bowl. Next, place the bowl off center on the platter and add the linens around it. For a little texture difference, I also added a small marble cutting board as a place holder for the naan. Then simply add your veggies around the dip. This tray never fails to get oohs and ahhs when I bring it to family gatherings and events.
Thanks for reading,