Spicy Garlic Dip // Not Without Salt
Avery Island, LA // Not Without Salt

Avery Island, LA // Not Without Salt

I had the best intentions of sharing these photos from my trip to Louisiana right after I arrived home in March. But you know life sometimes alters the best laid plans and to be honest I’m still finding my rhythm with this space after being away from it in a scattered sort of a way. I poured all of my creative energy into the book last year and it left little to be shared in this space because my desire was to make the book a reflection of the best of my work at this time in my life. I am pretty damn proud of what I, and a team of great people, created but we’ll talk a lot more about all of that soon. For now let’s travel back in time to when I fell in love with Louisiana.

The wispy moss gracefully dangling from the trees, the smell; fresh and damp, the fire engine red platters towering with crawfish and the mayonnaise with TABASCO for dipping, the slender older gentleman who smiled with his eyes and forced me out of my seat and my comfort to get up and dance – I’m so glad he did, and the passion and history laced throughout the long life of TABASCO. I went on this trip with preconceived notions of this product coming from a seemingly large corporation what I found was a pride that has been passed through the generations in the same way the original recipe has. With its prolonged aging in wood barrels, the particulars with the type of pepper grown and the fact that the CEO tastes the mash (mix of aged mashed pepper and salt) from every barrel, every morning, you can understand why this product has thrived for generations and why this family is a passionate and interesting bunch.

tabasco Untitled

I realize that a vegetable platter with such a simple dip as this is an odd way to mark such a bountiful and southern experience but like I mentioned in the last post; if it gets made again and again I feel a certain bit of duty to come and tell you about, no matter how delayed I am.

This dip was born out of a request to bring a “crudite platter” to a dinner party. At first I balked at its simplicity, wanting to contribute more than just vegetables but then I slowly wandered through the market looking for lesser known vegetable tray fixings and came up with something that made me *gasp* at the beauty and be reminded that food, on its own, with little or no manipulation from me is enough. More than enough.

Spicy Garlic Dip // Not Without Salt
Spicy Garlic Dip // Not Without Salt
Spicy Garlic Dip // Not Without Salt*My trip to Louisiana and this post were sponsored by TABASCO. As always, the words and recipes are mine.



Spicy Garlic Dip for Fresh Vegetables

1 cup (8 ounces) creme fraiche or sour cream

1 garlic clove, finely minced

2-3 teaspoons Green Jalapeno TABASCO

2 tablespoons finely minced fresh herbs (such as chives, parsley, mint, tarragon and dill)

salt and pepper


Combine the creme fraiche, garlic, TABASCO, and fresh herbs in a small bowl. Season to taste.


Use whatever is in season. So many vegetables, when thinly sliced, can be eaten raw and taste sweet, fresh and bright. Beets add an unmistakable color as do radishes. Fennel is sweet and fun to dip its floppy tendrils into the spicy dip. I love endive; bitter and crisp as well as pea shoots which taste faintly of sweet peas, a bit grassy and also fun to manage its vibrant leaves into the creamy bath.

20 Responses to “Spicy Garlic Dip for Fresh Vegetables”

  1. Christina

    What a beauty of a vegetable tray. Fresh veggies from the market and some kind of herbed dip are often what makes up dinner around here in the summer. Nothing better. Can’t wait to try this garlic dip… I love a bit of raw garlic every once in a while… totally underrated.

  2. Beth

    I love the simple recipe and sweet post. I’ve never been to Louisiana – but your pictures peak my interest! I assume you had those oysters with some tabasco, too. Yum.

  3. Donna Timm

    Once again, marvelous! Am going to get some of that flavor of Tabasco for sure. I watched the PBS(?) special on the Tabasco dynasty and it is truly amazing. Also the article in Response was excellent.

  4. molly yeh

    i’m joining the choruses here…. but these photos are seriously stunning! like, they should be framed and hung on a wall.

  5. saltandserenity

    I am addicted to their Chipotle Tabasco Sauce. I seem to be capable of consuming vast amounts of it. This dip would be outstanding with that variation.
    I too gasped at how stunning your crudite tray is! Yes, fresh vegetables are beautiful, but you must take some credit for your gorgeous arrangement!!

  6. Sis Adger

    Louisiana born 52 years ago and still in love with my state! So happy that you enjoyed your trip and the riches of south Louisiana. If you ever get to the north part, hollah! I’ll meet up with you and feed you!
    Thanks for posting the beautiful pictures and this recipe!

  7. di from the culinary library

    You might be interested in the definitive and most comprehensive sauce cookbook available on the market, MASTERY OF THE SAUCES. Following their highly successful Alchemy of the Mortar & Pestle and Edible Flowers & leaves, volume 3 has just been published by The Culinary Library and is available world wide on Amazon with a LOOK INSIDE function.

  8. Katharine

    I’m a little late on this, but I gotta say, I made this with yogurt and drizzled it over pizza right before I ate it. A-mazing.

  9. stacey

    Ashley, I had to comment because I had dinner at Gramercy Tavern last night and I swear the veggie plate there was good but not nearly as gorgeous as this one! Lovely.


Post a Comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>