Roasted Baby Spring Vegetables


A selection of baby veg, e.g. Jersey royals, pink fir apple potatoes, spring onions, carrots, radishes, British asparagus, baby leeks, baby turnips – whatever looks nicest/freshest and as locally sourced as possible
A good glug of cold pressed rapeseed oil

Salt and Pepper

A small handful of hard herbs – oregano, marjoram, thyme, savoury all work really well A little lemon zest


Pre-heat oven to 180C (fan) / 190C
Scrub clean but keep whole wherever possible – including the green tops of carrots, radishes,
turnips, etc. as this will look prettier in the final dish
Place in their groups into a large roasting tray in as much of a single a layer as possible and drizzle with cold pressed rapeseed oil, salt and pepper and scatter with your herbs
If your asparagus is on the slender side then add these later on so they don’t burn
Roast in the middle of the oven for anywhere between 30-50minutes, setting a timer and checking regularly
Once they are about 10-15 minutes from done add your asparagus to the pan as well
Place in groups on a large flat platter, grating over lemon zest and scatting with a few herbs if you like
Serve with the Watercress Lemon and Ricotta Cream

Make ahead: these can be made well ahead on the day and re-heated for 10 mins or so as guests arrive. No harm will come to them on the side if it’s a couple of hours before re-heating – no need to fridge, just cover them with a tea towel. If you want to make the day ahead then store in the fridge and let them come to room temperature before re-heating in the same way

Watercress Lemon and Ricotta Cream


1 bag of watercress
100g or so of ricotta (fresh if you can get it – try Neals Yard) 1 banana shallot or two small ones
a knob of butter
juice and zest of a lemon
a dash of tabasco/cayenne pepper (if you like)
salt and pepper


Saute the chopped shallot in the butter
Add and wilt the watercress in the shallots and butter
Once cooled a little add the ricotta, lemon juice and zest, salt and pepper • Blitz everything till its fairly smooth with just a few flecks of green
Taste and adjust with seasoning and lemon if needed
Add a dash of tabasco if you like (we didn’t but it would be nice)
Serve in a bowl in the middle of your spring veg platter

Make ahead: make up to a day in advance – it will probably last longer but won’t retain the same freshness. If fridged then the ricotta will go a little hard, so bring to room temperature and give a stir and taste again and adjust seasoning and lemon if needed. Grate with more zest and drizzle with best quality extra virgin olive oil if you like.


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