This June there are a lot of vegetables coming into season that would normally appear much earlier while other seasonal staples are catching up. It is good to make something summery with these late arrivals, such as sprouting broccoli with toasted almonds and a lemon dressing. By the end of the month there should be fresh peas, which if small and tender are delicious raw or gently braised with little gem lettuce. To compliment these greens try a verdant Loire Sauvignon such as the Teiller family's Menetou Salon or a delicate rosé like Lina Pieretti's Coteaux du Cap Corse.
We recently enjoyed a delicious meal with some new friends which included a subtly, smoky Lapsang Souchong infused salmon and celeriac rémoulade which they served with Alain Graillot's inimitable white Crozes-Hermitage to universal approval. We will definitely try and replicate that pairing at home.
Fruit-wise there isn't much that's home grown and ready to eat but by the end of the month there should be strawberries. I tend to go by the smell of them (hard to judge in a supermarket). It is good to eat close to the day of purchase as they don't seem to fair well either in or out of the fridge (and there's nothing worse than an ice cold, watery strawberry). Serve halved with a sprinkling of caster sugar and some fresh mint leaves or if you're feeling really indulgent some thick West Country cream and home-made, crunchy, sticky meringues. Wine-wise you can't do better than a blossom-scented, gently-honeyed Coteaux du Layon – it's like summer in glass.
By: Pippa Goldfinger