When we think of peas, most of us think of the canned or frozen kind. And that’s no surprise — real, fresh peas can be difficult to find, and their season is short. You probably won’t find them at the grocery store, but you probably will find them, if the timing is right, at a farmer’s market, farm stand, or in your CSA box. Known as English peas or garden peas, these green pods should not be overlooked. Luckily, their season is just around the corner, or here already, in much of North America.
Try out this delicious salad with your bounty of fresh peas. If you’re not a fan of spicy flavors, simply halve or omit chile.
Spicy Fresh Pea Salad
- 1 Cup fresh mint
- 2 Dried dates, pitted
- 1/2 Small serrano chile, stem removed
- 2 Teaspoons fresh lemon juice, plus zest of one lemon
- 1 1/2 Cup fresh peas
- 1 Small head romaine lettuce, shredded
- 1/2 Cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
- Coarse salt
- 1 Dollop plain yogurt (optional)
1. Prepare dressing. In a food processor, puree mint, dates, chile, lemon juice and zest until well blended. Add a tablespoon or two of water if the dressing is too thick. Adjust seasoning as desired.
2. Cook peas. In a medium saucepan, bring about 6 cups of salted water to a boil. While you’re waiting for the water to boil, fill a large bowl with ice water. Cook the peas in the boiling water for only 10-20 seconds, until just barely tender. Drain and transfer to ice water.
3. If you’re using yogurt, stir it into the dressing. Toss peas, lettuce and seeds with dressing and a pinch or two of salt. Serve.
Recipe Credit: 101 Cookbooks.