Eats Shoots and Leaves has to be one of the best titled books ever (at least if you’re a grammar nerd like me). Lately I’ve been eating shoots, the kind that are so sweet and tasty this time of year, and are available at my local farmer’s market; pea shoots. If you haven’t had them, or they haven’t made it to your farmer’s market yet (spring is taking its sweet old time arriving) keep an eye out for them, they are a lovely addition to any and everything. They smell and taste of spring, and are sure to make you smile.
I bought a bag of them which at first looked small, but grew when I opened it, so I had plenty for two dishes. For dinner one night I made shrimp and grits and topped the grits with a generous handful of pea shoots, then topped those with the shrimp. It looked gorgeous and we could smell the shoots as soon as they hit the hot grits. We stirred it all together and it heightened the dish to a new level.
For the remainder of the pea shoots I made a potato salad with red potatoes and a lemon vinaigrette. This is the kind of salad that could fit in at a picnic or barbecue as easily as with a fancier meal with real dishes not paper plates. I served it warm-ish but it will work cold as well. My advice is that you don’t add the shoots until you’re ready to serve it, so just save some of the dressing, as the potatoes will soak it up. I had extra dressing which I’m looking forward to using on my regular salads this week.
Pea Shoot and Potato Salad
- 2-3 cups fresh pea shoots
- 4 Medium red potatoes
- 3 scallions (thinly sliced)
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 lemon (juiced, about 1/4 cup)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- fresh ground pepper (a few grinds, to taste)
|Boil whole potatoes in well salted water until tender (about 20 minutes) |
Drain and let cool enough to handle
|In the bowl of a food processor, put garlic, lemon juice and mustard |
With the processor running slowly add oil, to form an emulsion
Add salt and pepper
|When potatoes have cooled toss them with the scallions and enough dressing to coat |
If serving immediately, add pea shoots and add more dressing if needed
Salad will keep in fridge for 2-3 days