Fresh green peas are the first sign for Spring and since they have a short season, I always get my fill before they disappear come Summer. And just in the nick of time, I spotted a new recipe from Michelle Obama's upcoming book, American Grown.
The First Lady's pea salad calls for peas, shallots, leeks, and mint, all tossed together with a healthy cream dressing.
After shelling the peas, they are quickly blanched and immediately soaked in an ice bath after cooking to ensure they don't end up mushy. The whole process, which might sound a bit complicated, actually takes just a few minutes.
Michelle's recipe originally called for adding puréed peas into the salad, but since I already had my blender out, I opted to add the lemon juice and olive oil in with the pea purée for an even smoother dressing. The result was a spring salad that'd be great to bring along to a seasonal party, since it can be made ahead, and the flavor only gets better with time.
My advice: run to the farmers market before all the year's peas are gone, then make this spring pea salad recipe.
2-1/2 cups shelled fresh green peas
1 small shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
1 small leek, cleaned, white part only, thinly sliced
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup shredded fresh mint leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
This salad can be prepared ahead of time and brought to room temperature before serving.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Pour the peas into the water and cook for no more than 2 minutes.
- Drain and immediately plunge the peas into a bowl of ice water. Drain and pat dry with a towel.
- Purée 1/2 cup of the peas with the juice of a lemon, zest and olive oil in a blender until smooth.
- Place the peas, shallot, leek and mint in a medium, nonreactive bowl and toss gently to combine.
- Pour the pea purée over the salad and gently toss. Season to taste with salt and pepper and toss gently until the vegetables are coated.
- Vegetables, Salads
Love this recipe? Check out more recipes from Michelle Obama and the White House.