I receive a lot of requests for recipes – more entrees, more low-carb, more “kid-friendly” (I don’t like that phrase, by the way), and the most popular, easy. The term easy means different things to different people. In my opinion, easy means not complicated, something that a cook of any skill level can successfully prepare. Or perhaps easy implies very few steps. But what I have deduced is that most of my students think that easy implies “quick,” as in quick to put together and minimal hands-on time.
When I come up with recipes for classes, I don’t like to demonstrate recipes that are too easy, because people don’t necessarily get value from watching me demonstrate something overly straightforward. But heaven knows I love easy recipes as much as the next person, so I save the really easy stuff for the blog or Instagram. When a few bloggers reached out to me about partnering with a collective of fabulous instagrammers and other bloggers to contribute fresh, easy pea recipes, I was all in! And that’s what today’s recipe is all about.
Peas are considered a spring vegetable because that’s when fresh peas come into season. But ironically, I hardly ever buy fresh peas because they are a pain in the neck to shell, and they need to be super fresh to be sweet. I use frozen/defrosted peas in many different ways all year long and they are always tender and deliciously sweet. They are great in dips, soups, sautes, fried rice, frittatas and even in smoothies. Peas are in the legume family, which I mentioned in my last post is now considered ok to eat during Passover. Peas have loads of protein and fiber, making this a great dish for a vegetarian meal.
I’ve actually been making this pea and mushroom sauté for years and years. It’s a classic combo that never gets old for me. In the winter, I use fresh thyme, but in the spring and summer I use fresh mint. Sometimes I add crushed red pepper with the mushrooms for a little background heat or I’ll drizzle with some truffle oil at the end. This recipe is fabulous with your Easter ham or lamb, as well as poultry and salmon. And leftovers are divine in an omelet or frittata or my standby, soup (just add vegetable or chicken stock.)
There are some talented bloggers participating in this collaboration. Do check out their sites for additional Easy Peasy Spring recipes using peas! I think my post is up first, but everyone’s should be up at some point today.
www.cooksandkid.com www.weelicious.com www.blossomtostem.net www.squaremealroundtable.com www.cocoaandsalt.com www.thewholeelchilada.com
- 3 Tablespoons unrefined olive oil or a combination of olive oil and ghee or olive oil and unsalted butter
- 1 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps wiped clean with a damp paper towel and sliced
- ½ pound maitake mushrooms, chanterelle or other mushroom of choice, cut into bite-size pieces
- 3½ cups fresh or frozen/defrosted peas
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper to taste (I usually add quite a bit)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh mint leaves
- a drizzle of truffle oil (optional)
- other additions, if desired: crushed red pepper, fresh thyme leaves instead of mint, dollops of Kite Hill almond milk chive "cream cheese," a drop or two of hot sauce
- Warm oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and allow to sit undisturbed for a few minutes or until golden brown on the underside. Saute until softened, another 3-4 minutes.
- Add the peas, salt and pepper and saute an additional 4-5 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the mint. Drizzle with truffle oil, if using. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately.
My family is a mix of vegetarians and meat eaters. I made this as a side dish, but it was satisfying enough for the vegetarians to have as the main. So easy and delicious, I think it’s a new family fave!
After my husband became vegan, he fell in love with mushrooms and he loves this dish. Just like you said — satisfying enough for a main. Plus, who doesn’t always have frozen peas in the freezer?? 🙂
I’m making it again tonight for more guests with the chicken kabobs. I can’t WAIT for your next cookbook. I made the Braised Fennel for another dinner guest last night. So delicious!
Oh how I love that fennel recipe from my book. I’m so glad you told me you enjoyed it because I feel like a lot of people don’t give fennel a chance and it’s so wonderful. Thanks, Katrina!
Made this for my husband and we loved it! I also mixed quinoa to it. It was an excellent main dish.
What a great idea to add quinoa to it! I’m going to try that next time. Thanks!
Looks great and sound delicious. Thank you for sharing.
It was a fun collaboration. Glad to participate with you!
looks great! def going to make this and i like the idea of adding goat cheese. We do something similar with roasted mushrooms and goat cheese! so good!
I hope you love it!
I just read your blog and definitely agree with you about the versatility of peas in any season, especially spring. A sauté of peas and a variety of mushrooms (or just one type) is one of my favorite combinations. I also do a combination of peas, asparagus and/or mushrooms with lots of spring onions, garlic, scallions, chives and parsley or basil, or both. Leftovers are great with pasta or rice. Sometimes I do a mixture of roast chicken or shrimp, some kind of rice, usually brown or wild, or even farro, peas, pimento-stuffed olives, onions, chicken broth, and either saffron or smoked paprika, which I call faux paella. Zucchini and peas also make a quick vegetable combination, and this can be used with pasta (either soupy or dry) with lots of grated parmigiano. I always add peas to stews and sometimes make a tomato sauce with peas, onions, chopped meat and chunks of roasted eggplant. This can be used over pasta (even in a baked pasta with ricotta and mozzarella) or rice or quinoa. Your excellent recipe certainly inspires lots of variations.
I love all of this, Mia. You are a pea expert! And faux paella — genius!!