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Bagna Cauda and Crudités: A Fabulous(ly Easy) Appetizer

Bagna cauda with crudités and crusty bread makes a stellar, easy party appetizer any time of year. 

Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda Vegetables Appetizer | Umami GirlEaster, like most everything, is sneaking right the heck up on me this year. But I’m delighted by the beautiful weather we’re having and the return of spring produce to the shops, even if I’m not quite checking whether the weather is seasonal or the produce is local. This easy appetizer platter with a mix of spring veggies, winter crossovers and hearty bread, feels like an honest take on the season.

Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda Vegetables Appetizer | Umami GirlBagna cauda means hot dip or hot bath in Italian, and without getting too weird (although that ship sailed like 35 years ago), it’s a hot bath I’d be happy to take just about any time. Technically the bath is for the bread and vegetables, but you know what? It’s all good.

Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda Vegetables Appetizer | Umami GirlThe main ingredients here are garlic and anchovies, butter and olive oil. And we might as well include freshly ground black pepper, actually — because that’s it. Five ingredients. Five minutes. Magic.

Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda Vegetables Appetizer | Umami GirlYou can use whatever vegetables you like, making this not just a spring idea but a year-round option. Bagna cauda drips, I won’t lie. So veggies with a little cup (like endive) or some nooks and crannies (like broccoli and asparagus tips) work best.

Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda Vegetables Appetizer | Umami GirlTalk to you soon.

Carolyn xx

Bagna Cauda and Crudités Appetizer

Preparation 00:20 Cook Time 00:05 Total Time 0:25
Serves 10     adjust servings

This easy recipe, adapted from the legendary Marcella Hazan via Saveur, makes a great year-round party appetizer -- just swap in your favorite seasonal vegetables. Leftover bagna cauda is delicious over pasta, chicken or fish.


For the crudités

  • 1 head broccoli, cut into bite-sized florets
  • 1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed
  • 1 head Belgian endive, leaves separated
  • 1 baguette, sliced

For the bagna cauda

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 ounces anchovy fillets, minced
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Fill a large pot halfway with water. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Bring water to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with ice water. When water boils, add broccoli and cook for one to two minutes, until bright green and not raw. Remove with a strainer to ice water. Repeat with asparagus. When vegetables are cool, blot dry and arrange on a large platter with endive and bread slices.

In a small pot, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat until the butter starts to foam. Add garlic and anchovy and cook, mashing anchovy against bottom and sides of pot with a spoon, until most of the anchovy has dissolved into the sauce, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat, season to taste with pepper, and pour into a small bowl (or serve directly from pot). Serve warm, over a little Sterno burner or tea light if you like, with crudités and crusty bread.


2 reviews


Hi there, I'm Carolyn, and I'm delighted you're here. I'm a NYC-area food, travel, yoga, coffee, wine, running, music making and book obsessive with a great family and a love for sharing it all with you. Grab a drink and come on in. Learn more.

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