Did you get the memo? Colour is very in this spring. But I’m not here to talk about coloured denim. I want to talk about colour on your plates. There is something very refreshing and invigorating about spring and to me, nothing says it better than a plate of colourful crudité. It’s a perfect nod to the season and a great way to enjoy real, whole food at its freshest.
I’m always excited to see crudité platters take centre stage at parties, I watch as guests gather around the colourful vegetable display. So when clients admit that they have trouble reaching their vegetable requirements, I usually suggest that they get a little crudité creative, to help them bump-up their produce intake during the day. Here’s how
When shopping for crudité, consider different colours, shapes, textures and switch things up with a new vegetable every week. I love Quebec grown heirloom carrots; they come in gorgeous purple, orange and yellow hues that would make any platter pop. Also on my plate are crisp snap peas, fennel bulb, radish slices, cherry tomatoes, endive, asparagus spears and chayote (a very crisp, neutral tasting vegetable, from the squash and cucumber family).
Prep them soon
The minutes you arrive home from your grocery store run are critical. Use this time to prep your crudité: Wash, peel and cut them into appealing shapes before storing. Also, if any of your vegetables need blanching, do so while you’re still in the swing of things. I prefer asparagus quickly blanched: Add to boiling water for 3-4 minutes or until just tender, then add to ice cold water to stop the cooking process and keep their bright green colour.
Store them well
Once your prep is done, crudité can keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 days in an airtight container. Although they might keep longer, I prefer to keep refilling my supply as the week progresses to maximize the freshness of the vegetables.
Enjoy them often
Store crudité in a glass or clear container and place at eye-level in the refrigerator to make them visible.
Carry crudité to the office, pack a small container with your lunch, prepare a plater when you visit a friend, set a plate out on the counter for your family to enjoy as supper is being prepared.
Crudité pack fibre and very few calories which make them a good grazing option when you’re simply on the hunt for something to crunch on.
If you’re looking for a more satiating snack, think produce + protein. So if you plan on dipping your vegetables, bean or yogurt-based dips are good options. See this recipe for spicy ceci bean spread with roasted garlic or if you prefer something really quick, I like to mix Greek yogurt with a little sriracha…for those of you who enjoy a kick.
Do you consider yourself crudité creative?