Pea Puree is a fine dining restaurant favourite, loved for the vibrant splash of colour it adds to a plate, that it serves a dual purpose as a side and sauce, as well as the sweet flavour that pairs so well with almost any protein!
This is a recipe given to me by a classically trained French Chef, Jean Baptiste of Baptiste & Wilson.
Welcome to Day 14 of the inaugural Holiday Salad Marathon, where I’m sharing 30 salads in a row through to Christmas Eve. Something different to the usual sugar-loaded baking countdowns!!
Now, I do know that today’s dish isn’t a salad as such, but it is made with vegetables (peas count!). And also it is an exceptionally good side dish for the Rack of Lamb I just published so I’m declaring that it qualifies!
I also think that this is an excellent side dish option for roasts and other grand centrepieces that make an appearance during the festive season. I love how it adds a big splash of colour to any table. Plus, it’s something different from the usual mashed potato, right? 🙂
What is pea puree?
It is literally cooked peas that are blitzed until it’s a smooth puree. It tastes like peas – sweet and a fairly subtle flavour which makes it ideal to serve as a side dish with many things.
It’s a fine dining restaurant favourite, often used to smear onto a plate before artfully arranging a piece of protein on top.
Basic recipes will just boil with stock/broth then blitz which is fine, but it literally just tastes like peas.
To make Pea Puree properly, the way fine dining restaurants do, start by sautéing garlic and eschalots in butter before adding the peas and stock. This one little extra step really makes all the difference. It makes pea puree taste luxurious.
What goes in Pea Puree
Here’s what you need:
Yes, you see frozen peas. Because I totally buy into the whole snap frozen thing!!
If you have the time to pod your own peas, I applaud you. (And please invite me over for dinner).
Optional straining – for ultra smooth
I’m not going to lie to you – if you’re at my house for a casual dinner, I’ll serve Pea Puree to you straight out of the food processor. If you’ve got a powerful one, it will be acceptably smooth.
However, if you really want to achieve a restaurant-quality result, push it through a mesh colander / sieve. It’s easy using a rubber spatula it takes less than 1 minute to do.
Do that, and the pea puree will be as silky smooth as the stuff dotting plates at posh restaurants!
How to serve Pea Puree
Pea Puree is sensational served with almost any protein for both the vibrant colour it adds to any plate or dish, as well as the subtle sweet flavour.
It acts as both a side dish as well as like a sauce, and the reason I’m sharing this recipe is because it’s a suggested side/sauce for a Rosemary Crumbed Rack of Lamb I just shared. For a proper British touch you could stir in some finely chopped mint to the puree, as a modern and much more appealing interpretation of traditional mint sauce with lamb!
Pea Puree will go well with literally any protein – meat or seafood. Here are a few ideas:
- Simple baked Chicken Breast or pan fried piece of fish
- It would look stunning under a Crispy Skin Salmon or any plain baked or pan-fried fish (in fact, that’s a posh restaurant favourite!)
- Excellent alongside Crackling Roast Pork, and a match made in heaven with a buttery Herb & Garlic Roast Chicken.
To serve it, you can either do it the fine dining way – dollop and spread the pea puree onto a plate then place protein on top. Or just do it the normal people’s way and serve bowls of it with a spoon for everybody to help themselves! – Nagi x
PS In case you were in any doubt, the latter is my way. 😂
What is the Holiday Salad Marathon?
This is my inaugural Christmas recipe countdown where I am sharing 30 salad recipes in a row until Christmas Eve – something completely different to people’s usual baking countdowns!
These salads are in addition to my regular 3 new recipes a week. Because aren’t you bored of the usual tomato-cucumber-lettuce garden salad routine??
- 1 kg / 2 lb frozen peas
- 125g / 8 tbsp butter , unsalted
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 medium eschalots , finely sliced (ie the baby onions, aka French onions, US: shallots)
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock/broth , low sodium (use vegetable stock if the puree is for fish)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp white pepper
- 1 small handfuls mint leaves (optional)
- Aromatics: Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and eschalots, saute 3 minutes until soft, but don't let them go golden.
- Cook peas: Add frozen peas and stock, increase heat to bring to simmer then cover and reduce heat to medium. Simmer 2 minutes.
- Reserve Liquid: Remove 1/3 cup liquid from the saucepan, reserve.
- Blitz: Transfer all peas and remaining liquid into a food processor. Add salt and pepper, and mint if using. Blitz on high for 1 minute until smooth.
- Optional straining: For extra smooth, press through a mesh colander with a rubber spatula (it's easy).
- Adjust consistency: Use Reserved Liquid as needed to achieve the desired consistency – I like a soft, dolloping consistency. Sometimes people want it looser. Add more salt and pepper if desired – remember, this is not supposed to be strongly flavoured or seasoned!
- Serve warm. Either dollop/smear onto plates, or serve in bowls for people to help themselves.
Life of Dozer
Just another day in the Life of Dozer – at the local dog park!