Peas sometimes get a bad rap. As kids, many us were forced to eat them in the form of thick, chartreuse-hued soup, or microwaved and mushy with a mish mash of similarly textured corn and carrots. But it’s time to abandon our feelings about peas past and accept them as the fresh, sophisticated ingredient they are. Jeanine Donofrio, beloved food blogger and author of The Love and Lemons Cookbook: An Apple-to-Zucchini Celebration of Impromptu Cooking ($19; amazon.com), uses the bright green beauties to make Spring Pea and Mint Crostini, an ode to Italia and seasonal produce.
“Some things are especially worth waiting for—a just-picked summer tomato, a super-sweet spring strawberry, or a drip-down-your-arm Texas peach,” writes Donofrio. “I love exploring my markets from season to season and I hope to inspire you to get acquainted with your local produce.” There’s no time like the present to discover (or re-visit) or your neighborhood farmers’ market; hit the stands this week, and don’t forget to take the recipe below with you!
Spring Pea and Mint Crostini
6 to 8 slices whole-grain bread
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
3/4 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 cup peas (blanched 1 minute of fresh; thawed if frozen)
2 radishes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
Small bunch of mint leaves
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Toast or grill the bread with a drizzle of olive oil. Top each slice with a slather of ricotta cheese, a few peas, the radish slices, crumbled feta cheese, and mint leaves. Season with salt and pepper to taste.