Primavera salad

Celebrate all the fresh tastes of spring with Aaron Crazes delightful seasonal salad
By Aaron Craze
Primavera salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 1
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

  • 1 handfuls fresh podded peas
  • 1 handfuls podded broad beans
  • 3 rashers dry-cured, smoked streaky bacon
  • 3 stalks spears asparagus
  • 1 bunches mint
  • 1 bunches basil
  • splashes olive oil
  • 1 cloves wet garlic, (see Cooks tip below)
  • 1 courgette
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • 30 g firm goats' cheese

Tips and Suggestions

'Wet' garlic is very fresh, new seasons young garlic that has just been harvested. It is sweeter and less pungent than the older dried garlic, but does not last as well.

Method

1. Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil, add the peas and broad beans, blanch for 1 minute, then drain and refresh under cold water.

2. Slip the pods from the broad beans. Set the peas and beans aside.

3. Put the bacon rashers in a heavy-based frying pan over a low heat and allow the fat to melt out and cook until the bacon is golden on both sides. Drain on kitchen paper, cut into lardon-sized pieces and set aside.

4. Snap off and discard the woody ends of the asparagus. Cut each spear in half lengthways, then put them, cut side down, on a hot griddle without any oil, and allow to char. Transfer to a bowl.

5. Pick a few of the tender top leaves from the bunches of herbs and keep aside for later. Pick a handful of both mint and basil leaves from the remaining bunch, put them in a mortar and use the pestle to grind them up coarsely.

6. Add a splash of olive oil to the mortar, then add the garlic and grind the mixture to a rough paste, adding more oil if desired. Pour into a small bowl, leaving a spoonful or two in the mortar.

7. Add half the peas and broad beans to the mortar, sprinkle with salt and smash gently with the pestle until well combined.

8. Cut some long slivers of courgette with a vegetable peeler and put into the bowl with the warm, charred asparagus. Add a little of the herb oil, some salt and freshly ground black pepper, and mix well. Squeeze over some lemon juice.

9. To serve, spoon some of the crushed peas and broad beans onto a plate. Layer up the courgette and asparagus and drizzle over some more dressing. Scatter over some of the whole peas and broad beans, then the bacon. Using a vegetable peeler scatter over some shavings of the goats' cheese (or just crumble the cheese with your fingers). Finish the dish with the reserved tender top leaves of basil and mint.

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