The French word “crudités” sounds so much more refined than “raw vegetables,” but that’s exactly what it describes. A platter of crudités is appropriate for just about any gathering and I often create small ones just for Michael and I to snack on.
- broccoli florets
- green, yellow, and red peppers
- sweet mini-peppers
- snow peas
- yellow squash
- jicama strips
- …and anything else crunchy that you can think of
The key is variety and size and shape. I drug a fork down the length of my cucumbers before slicing in order to get the design on the peel. (Taste your peel first! If it’s bitter, you need to peel it all off.) Rather than throw baby carrots on the platter, I started with large whole carrots and made long, appetizing sticks. Red peppers were sliced thinly. Sweet mini peppers were thrown on whole, as were snow peas. Broccoli and cauliflower were broken up into florets. Colors were arranged so that the greens were split up. I kept the carrots and celery soaking in icy cold water up until the minute I put them out, guaranteeing maximum crunch.
I love the serving cones that are now available through numerous kitchen stores. For our cookout last weekend, I cut jicama and colored pepper spears, mixed them with broccoli and cauliflower, and my friend Deloris artfully arranged them in a cone lined with wax-coated checkered paper. They looked great on the table.