Thursday, April 5, 2012

peas (if you please)

After going on at length yesterday about my happy but accidental subscription to My Recipes' "dinner tonight" emails, I figured I might as well mention another success born out of the daily missives: herbed mashed peas. 

(courtesy of "my recipes")

Ok, I realize if you're anything like my mother, just the word "pea" made you stop reading. I personally didn't discover my love for peas (or whiskey, or country music) until I lived in Italy, and may've joined you pea-haters in turning up your noses at the notion of eating them in any form prior to that point. But now I devour them constantly, and while I can't figure out what led to this change of heart, the point is, you should give the little green guys a second chance.  I can't imagine my life sans peas (or whiskey, or country music) at this point!

I most often eat them covered in a little pesto or a dash of olive oil and fresh pepper, but was intrigued by this recipe for herbed mashed peas that landed in my inbox as March 16th's recipe. I didn't expect the execution of the side dish or the procurement of the supplies to be difficult. Luckily I was right on the actual preparation part, but unfortunately my normally trusty Trader Joe's failed me when it came to tarragon. It also had only very pricey salmon, so I reverted to chicken. And in my rush to get in and out before the dinner rush, I forgot to buy a lemon. 

So I had to also hit the nearby Whole Foods on my walk home for the tarragon and lemon, but considering it's maybe 2 blocks from TJ's, and on my direct route to my apartment, it wasn't a huge inconvenience. 

In retrospect, I wish I hadn't been able to find the tarragon or lemon at all. In my culinary ignorance, I didn't realize tarragon has a distinctly licorice flavor, which is so not my cup of tea. I would've stuck with just the prescribed basil, maybe upping the quantity, and skipped the tarragon altogether. I also think the suggested 2 tablespoons of lemon juice was too much. I don't think the lemon flavor is totally out of place, but in our peas, it was just too strong. Lessons learned: 1)tarragon is icky, and 2)don't dump all the acid in at once, test your peas first!

Tarragon and lemon diatribes aside, Sophie and I still liked the mashed peas. They were a nice change from rice or potatoes, which I feel like I make too often. But the best part was how easy they were to make. I may or may not have struggled to cut the leek at first, but that little road block was quickly vanquished by a switch from my chef's knife to a paring knife. From there, smooth (and rapid) sailing.  

I have happy hours the next few days (and a busy weekend ahead), so I won't have a chance to try any more daily dinner recipes this week, but maybe next week I'll manage to strike a better home cooking/happy hour balance...     

No comments:

Post a Comment