Using the Harvest: English Peas with Romesco and Mint

The book at the front of the pack on my “cook shelf” these days is by José Andrés. Since traveling to Spain late last summer, I cook at least one, if not two Spanish dishes weekly.  I have a love affair with Romesco (you know by my previous post) thus this dish caught my eye.  Even more so because it contains English Peas, which are abundant but winding down fast at Farmer’s Markets in northern California, and hopefully where you are too.

Guisantes Tiernos al Romesco (Spring Green Peas with Romesco Sauce and Mint)

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup chopped scallions

1 1/2 cups shelled English peas (from about 1 1/2 pounds of pea pods)

1 cup romesco sauce, room temperature

about 16 small mint leaves

Kosher salt, to taste

Method: Make your romesco.  I recommend doing this the day before, or the morning you plan to make this dish.

Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat.  Cook the scallions for 5 minutes.  Raise the heat to medium high and add the peas.  Saute for 1 minute (if you want crisp peas) and 3 to 5 minutes (if you want slightly more cooked peas- see my note on this below).  Remove from heat.

Make a bed of romesco sauce on each of 4 plates.  Place the pea and scallion mixture on top.  Garnish each dish with 4 or so mint leaves, salt and freshly ground black pepper.  A drizzle of a nice oil over top is a perfect finish.  We ate this with toasted flatbread but anything will work.

Now go find yourself a good recipe for romesco!

Note: I enjoyed the dish with the peas cooked only slightly.  They had an explode-in-your-mouth freshness when bit into.  Now the hubby on the other hand would have liked them cooked more.  I think he was anticipating a warmer dish but this one is definitely tapas / pintxos style, fresh and room temperature.

You can also use fava beans.

Recipe source:  Tapas, A Taste of Spain in America.


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