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5 chefs share their most-loved summer recipe

Savouries, sweets and sides – five world-renowned chefs share the dish that always reminds them of summer



1) First make the jerk butter by combining all its dry ingredients, plus the garlic, in a large bowl and then fold in the softened butter.

2) Next, make the mayo. Place egg yolks in a food processor and add mustard and lemon juice. Pulse ingredients until well combined. With motor running, add oil in a slow, steady stream (mixture should become thick and emulsified). Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3) Carefully place the corn in a large pot of boiling water and let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove and, when cool enough to handle, brush with the jerk butter and wrap in foil.

4) Place on a cookie sheet to roast in the oven (at 190°C/375°F) or grill under a medium heat for 6-8 minutes. While the corn is cooking, mix the ingredients for the ranch breadcrumbs in a bowl and set aside. Remove corn from the foil and brush again with the jerk butter, then coat with the aioli and top with breadcrumbs. Garnish with chili-powder lime wedges.

Nina Compton’s jerk corn with aioli and ranch breadcrumbs

“This recipe makes for a perfect summer side dish and reminds me of being back home in Saint Lucia. It’s a combination of my Caribbean roots and training in Italian cuisine. The flavors of the jerk seasoning, silky aioli and lime come together to create a bold but balanced summer dish inspired by my childhood.”

Serves 6-8


6-8 ears of fresh corn (one per person), shucked and each cob cut in half

For the jerk butter:

½lb butter, softened

1 tbsp roasted and chopped garlic

2-3 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp onion powder

2 tsp dried thyme

2 tsp sugar

1 tsp cumin

2 tsp salt

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp ground allspice

½ tsp black pepper

½ tsp dried crushed red pepper

½ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

For the aioli (makes 1 cup):

2 large egg yolks

1 tsp Dijon mustard

4 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 cup vegetable oil

Coarse salt and ground pepper to taste

For the ranch breadcrumb:

1 cup toasted panko breadcrumbs

¼ cup ranch powder (seasoning mix)

1 tsp finely sliced scallions

1 tsp crispy chicken skin (optional)

To garnish:

Lime wedges dipped in chili powder

At Nina Compton’s restaurant Compère Lapin in New Orleans, the menu is influenced by the city’s rich culinary heritage and the Caribbean comfort food of Compton’s Saint Lucian upbringing

Ruth Rogers’ panzanella

“Panzanella is synonymous with summer; the tomatoes are ripe and the basil is strong and fragrant. It is typically Tuscan, using bread as the base, with the anchovies, capers and red wine vinegar giving it a salty edge. There are many variations, some with cucumber, but the one I like best is the simplest – just with tomatoes and grilled red and yellow peppers.”

Serves 6


100g salted capers

100g salted anchovies

2 stale ciabatta loaves

1kg fresh plum tomatoes

1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed to a paste with a little sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper for seasoning

250ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving

4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3 red peppers

3 yellow peppers

2 fresh red chilies

150g black olives, stoned

A large bunch of fresh basil leaves


1) Put the capers in a sieve and rinse under cold running water. Leave to soak in cold water for 40 minutes, then rinse again.

2) Rinse the anchovies under cold running water to remove all the salt, then gently remove the spine bones and heads. Pat dry. Separate the anchovies into fillets.

3) Remove the crusts from the bread, cut the bread into thick slices and place in a large bowl.

4) Skin and quarter the tomatoes, remove the seeds into a sieve set over a bowl to retain the juices. Season with the garlic and black pepper, then add the extra virgin olive oil and the red wine vinegar.

5) Pour the tomato juices over the bread and toss until the bread has absorbed the liquid. Depending on the staleness of the bread, more liquid may be required, in which case add a little more olive oil.

6) Heat the grill or a char-grill/griddle pan to high. Grill the whole peppers until blackened all over, then remove the skin and seeds. Cut each pepper into eighths lengthways. Grill the chilies until blackened, then skin, seed and chop finely.

7) In a large dish, make a layer of some of the bread. Top with some of all the other ingredients, then cover with another layer of bread. Continue until all the ingredients have been used. The final layer should have the peppers, tomatoes, capers, anchovies, olives and basil visible. Let it sit for an hour at room temperature. Drizzle with more extra virgin olive oil before serving.


1) Put the milk in a saucepan, place over a medium heat and bring to the boil. Watch it as the milk is about to boil so as not to let it boil over. Remove it from the heat and allow to cool.

2) Put the strawberries and sugar in another saucepan and place over a medium heat. Cook until the strawberries have softened but not completely broken down and the sugar has completely melted. Transfer to a blender and process until thoroughly pulverised, then transfer to a large measuring jug.

3) Strain the cooled milk over the fruit. Then add the cream and stir until all three elements are completely blended. Churn the ice cream in your ice-cream maker, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Anissa Helou’s strawberry ice cream

“You can vary endlessly on this summer recipe by replacing the strawberries with any other type of fleshy fruit, such as figs, apricots, mulberries, raspberries or blackberries. For any of these, you will need to follow the recipe as is, adjusting the sugar according to the sweetness of the fruit. You can also make it with bananas or mangoes (in which case do not cook the fruit but just pulverize). Use the weight given here as a guideline for the amount of fruit pulp you need for the variation you choose.”

Makes about 1 1/4 litre


300ml organic whole milk

500g ripe strawberries, trimmed

175g golden caster sugar

300ml crème fraîche or very thick cream

Vicky Lau is the owner and head chef at the Michelin-starred Tate Dining Room and Bar in Hong Kong, which serves Chinese cuisine with a French influence

Vicky Lau’s pork dumplings

“I love this recipe, especially for home cooking, as it’s easy to make, delicious and brings back plenty of childhood memories. I also spend time with my daughter making these dumplings at home, which is quality time spent with her, seeing how she learns to fold and make Chinese dumplings.”

Makes 60 dumplings


300g minced pork

300g mince pork fat

6g salt

12g sugar

9g light soy sauce

9g oyster sauce

1g white pepper

2g dark soy sauce

35g ginger, chopped

35g scallions (white and some green)

150g water

1g sesame oil

2 packs of dumpling wrappers (30 wrappers in each packet)


1) Mix together the salt, sugar, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, white pepper and dark soy sauce.

2) Cut the ginger and scallions and blend until liquid.

3) In a bowl, add the meat and fat, then slowly add the ginger, scallions, water and soy sauce mix. Mix with your hands until combined and slightly elastic.

4) Put a dessert spoon-sized amount of the filling into the dumpling wrappers, then form to your desired dumpling shape and pinch the edges.

5) Boil in water for 2 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon and serve.


1) For the sponge, preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F and grease a 33 x 23cm/13 x 9in baking tin.

2) Melt the butter in a small pan over a low heat and set aside to cool.

3) Whisk the yolks using an electric mixer with half the sugar until pale and thick enough to leave a ribbon trail. In a separate bowl, whisk the whites with a pinch of salt and the remaining sugar until stiff peaks form.

4) Carefully fold the flour into the egg yolks, then fold in the whites and the water in three batches, and finally fold in the melted butter.

5) Spread the mixture thinly and evenly into the prepared tin and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 8-10 minutes, until the sponge is golden and just dry to the touch. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.

6) Place the blackcurrants and redcurrants in a saucepan with the sugar and lemon juice and cook over a medium heat until the fruit pops and begins to release its juices. Remove from the heat and add the remaining fruit and the lemon zest, then let stand for a few minutes to allow the flavours to develop.

7) Line a 1-litre pudding bowl with two strips of parchment to form a cross (this will help to mould the pudding). Cut two rounds of sponge using a cookie cutter – one to fit the bottom of the bowl and one slightly larger to fit the top. Place the smaller disc in the bottom of the basin. Cut long tapering strips of sponge and use them to line the sides of the basin, overlapping them slightly and pressing tightly to ensure there are no gaps.

8) Using a slotted spoon, spoon the fruit into the sponge-lined basin, filling it to the brim. Spoon over the juices, reserving a little for serving, and then lay the second sponge disc on top.

9) Cover with foil and place a saucer on top that fits snugly inside the rim of the basin. Weigh down using a can or something similar and refrigerate overnight.

10) To serve, invert the pudding on to a deep plate. Take the reserved liquid and brush over any of the pale areas of the sponge. Serve with crème fraîche.

Skye Gyngell’s summer pudding

“This has to be the dessert I look forward to more than any other throughout the year – nothing says ‘English summer’ more than a gloriously plump, sharp pudding full to the brim with summer berries. This recipe is made using sponge rather than bread, and with more blackberries than any other fruit – it’s a little extra work, but definitely worth it. It’s better made a couple of days in advance and lasts well for several days.”

Serves 8-10


For the sponge:

15g unsalted butter, plus a little extra for greasing

7 medium organic eggs, separated

375g caster sugar

A small pinch of salt

360g plain flour, sifted

5 tbsp warm water

For the fruit:

350g blackcurrants

250g redcurrants

250g caster sugar

Finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

200g blackberries

200g raspberries

100g strawberries

Crème fraîche, to serve


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