Pea shoot salad with bacon wrapped chèvre

Pea shoot salad with chèvre

Make honey-rosemary goats cheese for a meat-free version, see note in recipe below. Deutsches Rezept unten.

 

I am still totally amazed how much a salad leaf can taste of peas, well that sounds odd but you know what I mean. Wispy pea shoots with their tender tendrils do not only look absolutely pretty, their fine taste is a surprise as well and makes them a great addition to any mixture of salad leaves.

A total stickler for old(-fashioned) or forgotten foods, I am happy to come across some things on the local farmers markets or the great abundance of the Frankfurt Kleinmarkthalle but others, I have to grow myself. I miss having a garden every season but especially in spring when everything around suddenly bursts into green growth and you see your plants progress. I grew up in a garden, my grandfather’s garden to be accurate, where I spend all of my childhood. My grandfather picked me up from Kindergarten every day on his bicycle and after lunch he, my grandmother Anni & I went to the garden. We dug, sowed tiny seeds for carrots into neat rills drawn into the ground with a stick, weeded the flower beds, watered the plants with a heavy, long yellow & black marked rubber hose (which looked quite like a snake), burned the cut offs in a rusty old drum and cooked the first potatoes in the fire. My swing was attached to branch of the pear tree and I happily played in the mud and needed to have a great soak & scrub down before my parents came to collect me in the evening. Paradise. I neeeeeeed a garden. Anyway, to compensate I am growing raspberries, forest strawberries & a great number of herbs and the occasional bean on our balcony. Plus the pea shoots, of course.

Pea shoot salad with chèvre

For the salad: first plant your peas! I am not kidding.

Pea shoots grow rapidly and are big enough for a salad in about 10-14 days. You can literally watch them grow which is rather great for children and very impatient people and instantaneously creates the feeling of great satisfaction that you have grown your own food (on a window ledge or flower pot). All you need are some dried green peas from the grocery store & the flower pot, window box or tiny corner of your vegetable patch. Throw a handful of peas onto the soil, press the peas with your flat hand lightly into the ground and cover with a thin sprinkling of earth (1cm or ½ inch). Water and keep the soil moist from now on every day. Tadaa! As I said, you will be able to watch them grow and within a fortnight harvest your first pea shoots & tendrils when they have reached about 5-7cm or over 2 inches. Can’t eat them all? Grow them a few days more into robust little stems of 15-20cm for stir-fried pea shoots.

Clearly, this is a brilliant vegetarian salad / starter / appetizer if you leave the bacon and drizzle the creamy goats cheese rounds with a little honey & a few rosemary needles and give it a quick broil in the oven. Mhmhm, feeling hungry already.

 

 


 

Pea shoot salad with bacon wrapped chèvre

Makes a lunch main course for one; also a great starter for a menu: increase salad and figure one goats cheese per person (or more for hungry people)

a handful of pea shoots (about 20 sprigs)
baby spinach & other salad leaves
¼ yellow bell pepper, diced
2 tablespoons cooked broad beans
a few radishes, thinly sliced
a small shallot, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon white balsamic or cider vinegar
3 tablespoons hazelnut oil
salt & pepper
2 small rounds of creamy goats cheese (chèvre)
2 rashers of streaky bacon (not too thick cut)
4 rosemary needles
a tiny spritz of olive oil

 

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350° F) or use the grill / broiler.

Arrange all the salad ingredients on a plate or platter. Make the vinaigrette from mustard, vinegar, oil, salt & pepper.

Wrap the goats cheeses in bacon, cross-wise is best and stick a few rosemary needles into the parcels. Heat an ovenproof pan over a medium-hot heat, add a tiny bit of olive oil to prevent sticking and fry the bacon wrapped goats cheeses on both flat sides until the bacon is lightly browned. Place your pan into the oven or under the grill to quickly cook the rest of the bacon before the cheese melts (a little melting is ok & definitely wanted). For the vegetarian version place the cheeses in an ovenproof dish, drizzle with a little honey and a few chopped rosemary needles and broil or grill swiftly for the same result (warmed cheeses but not totally melted). Place onto your salad, drizzle with vinaigrette and serve with a few slices of ficelle or baguette.

 


 

Salat mit Erbsensprossen und in Speck gewickelter Ziegenkäse

Für einen Salat zum Mittag oder auch eine tolle Vorspeise: dafür nur die Salatmenge erhöhen und eventuell nur einen Ziegenkäse pro Person einplanen (hungrige Leute bekommen zwei)

1 Handvoll Erbsensprossen (ca. 20 Stengel, einfache Pflanzanleitung: Erbsen pflanzen, mit dünner Schicht Erde bedecken, wässern, nach 10-14 Tagen 5cm große Sprossen ernten)
Baby Spinat & andere Salatblätter
¼ gelbe Paprika, gewürfelt
2 EL gekochte & gepalte Saubohnen
ein paar Radieschen, dünn gehobelt
1 kleine Schalotte, fein gewürfelt
1 TL Dijonsenf
1 EL weißer Balsamico oder Apfelessig
3 EL Haselnussöl
Salz & Pfeffer
2 kleine cremige Ziegenkäsetaler (chèvre)
2 Scheiben Bacon oder Frühstücksspeck (nicht zu dünn)
4 Rosmarinnadeln
ein wenig Olivenöl

 

Backofen auf 180°C vorheizen oder den Grill benutzen.

Die Salatzutaten auf einem Teller oder einer Platte arrangieren und die Vinaigrette aus Senf, Essig, Öl, Salz & Pfeffer zubereiten.

Die Ziegenkäse jeweils kreuzweise mit einer Scheibe Bacon umwickeln und Rosmarinnadeln in die Päckchen stecken. Etwas Olivenöl in eine ofenfeste Pfanne geben und die Käse bei mittlerer Hitze von beiden flachen Seiten leicht bräunlich braten. Dann die Pfanne in den Ofen oder unter den Grill geben um den restlichen Speck zu garen. Dabei sollte der Käse nicht völlig schmelzen (ein leichte Schmelze ist aber durchaus erwünscht). Für eine vegetarische Version die Käse mit etwas Honig und Rosmarin bestreuen und in einer ofenfesten Form gleich im Ofen erwärmen oder kurz unter den Grill platzieren. Die warmen Käse sofort auf den Salat geben, mit der Vinaigrette beträufeln und mit Ficelle oder Baguette servieren.

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