Pesto pea salad
Use Ina's pesto recipe for this light salad - it's great with grilled chicken.
- For the peas
- 250g of frozen peas
- 2 tbsps pine nuts, toasted
- 300g baby spinach leaves
- For the pesto
- 30g walnuts
- 30g pine nuts
- 3 tbsp garlic, chopped
- 100g basil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 350ml olive oil
- 100g grated parmesan
For the pesto:
1) Place the walnuts, pine nuts and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 15 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is thoroughly pureed.
2) Add the parmesan and puree for a minute. Use right away, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.
For the peas:
1) Cook the peas in a saucepan of boiling salted water for 1 minute. Immediately immerse the peas in a bowl of ice cold water and leave to fully cool.
2) Meanwhile, place the pine nuts in a dry frying pan and cook over medium heat for about 4 minutes, until evenly browned, tossing frequently.
3) Place the spinach leaves in a salad bowl. Drain the peas and sprinkle them over the spinach. Sprinkle the toasted pine nuts over the top. Add 4 tablespoons of the pesto and toss to combine.
Notes: Air is the enemy of pesto. For freezing, pack it in containers with a film of oil on top or cover with cling film with all the air pressed out.
To clean basil, remove the leaves, swirl them in a bowl of water, and then spin them very dry in a salad spinner. Store them in a closed plastic bag with a slightly damp paper towel. As long as the leaves are dry they will stay green for several days.