13 February 2012

Poached baby vegetables with caper mayonnaise

Apologies crew but I broke my arm and have been out of action for a week or so. Straight back to the thick of it, though, with another Ottolenghi from Plenty. I'll say straight up that this one isn't as good as some of the other crackers, but it might be worth a look if this kind of thing tickles your fancy. Check the original recipe.

  • baby vetables - fennel, carrot, leek, asparagus etc
  • one egg, vegetable and olive oil, lemon, white wine vinegar, Dijon mustard for the mayonnaise
  • white wine, olive oil and bay leaves for the poaching liquor

Baby vegetables are something that may well set you back a bit normally. I was lucky to get a load of them cheap from Ridley Road and I supplemented them with a few adult vegetables in the form of carrots and courgettes.

First up make your mayonnaise. Use your normal method: I'm a self-confessed failure in this area, for some reason mine is often thin and fails to coagulate. The key here is for it to be very lemony and to chuck some capers in at the end. Regardless of the overall success of the dish the mayo is amazing, and should be used in other circumstance.

Next fix up your veg - Otto suggests poaching them in a mixture of white wine and olive oil. This is a nice idea but kind of wasteful. All the oil he calls for also makes things greasy when combined with the oil of the veg. I think some stock with lemon and bay and gestures of oil and wine is ok. Poach until done but with a slight crunch.

Serve with your preferred starch - grain/potato/bread with the veg, a dollop of mayo and a little ladle of stock. This responds well to some black pepper.
that's lunch sorted

A slight faff this one. It doesn't quite have the attractive simplicity of some other Ottolenghi dishes, what with the poaching and mayonnaising processes. It is, though, rather pretty, and might be a nice dinner party dish for an elegant starter. As I said, the lemon tinged mayo is a wonder and would be sublime with a lump of fish or some courgette burgers.

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