Tuesday, January 4, 2011


This wine-friendly salad was adapted by New York Times writer Christine Muhlke from "Plenty" by Yotam Ottolenghi. You can prepare the beans and peas the day before and finish making it the day of your picnic. It works with pretty much any wine and is as beautiful as it is delicious. Sorry - we forgot to take a picture.

1/2 pound French beans, trimmed
1/2 pound snow peas, trimmed
1/2 pound green peas
2 teaspoons coriander seeds, roughly crushed
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
1 fresh mild red chili, deseeded and finely diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
Coarse sea salt

Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Blanch the beans for 4 minutes, then lift them out of the pan and into a bowl of ice water to refresh. Drain and dry. Using the same boiling water, blanch the snow peas for 1 minute. Refresh, drain and dry. Blanch the green peas for 20 seconds. Refresh, drain and dry. Combine the vegetables in a large bowl.

Put the coriander seeds, mustard seeds and oil in a small saucepan set over medium heat. When the seeds begin to pop, pour the contents over the vegetables. Toss, then add the onion, chili, garlic, zest and tarragon. Mix well and season with salt to taste. 
Makes 4 salad servings, 6 as part of a picnic spread. We enjoyed this with olives, cheeses, bread, cured meats, and of course wine on the patio at Milagro Farm Vineyard and Winery. 

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