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Saturday, July 20, 2013

Fresh peas…frozen can’t compare


When I decided to create a recipe with peas, I wanted to truly highlight them. So often peas are mixed into salads or pasta dishes for color, and we really don’t get the full flavor of them. While it took about 10 minutes to shell the fresh peas that I received from my CSA, it’s completely worth it. They were plump and full of sweet flavor. You can’t even compare them with the wrinkly, frozen ones that we are so used to eating.

I served this pea purée with local cod for a weeknight dish, and made a little extra so that I could spread it on crostini for my weekend guests. If you double this recipe, you’ll have enough left over for a crowd.

Local Cod with Pea Purée 
Serves 4

2 cups of fresh peas, shelled
1 shallot, minced
3 tablespoons of butter
Quarter cup of water
Freshly cracked pepper
2 tablespoons of crème fraîche
2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese

1 pound of fresh cod, seasoned with salt and freshly cracked pepper
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Chopped dill, for garnish

Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat and add the shallots. Sautée the shallots until they are translucent, about 2 minutes, and then add the peas, water, salt and pepper. Cover partially with a lid and cook for about 5 for minutes or until the peas have softened and the sauce has reduced.

Transfer three-quarters of the peas to a food processor while keeping the remaining peas warm over low heat in a small saucepan. In the food processor, purée the peas, crème fraîche and parmesan cheese until smooth. Transfer the pea purée to a small saucepan and keep it warm over low heat.

Meanwhile, in a 12-inch skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and then add the cod. Cook it, turning once, until each side is golden brown.

To serve: divide the pea purée among 4 plates, place the cod on top, and then finish with the pea sauce. Add the dill for garnish.