Peas with Bacon Vinaigrette

Now, the best idea ever for staying cool in the kitchen: stay out of the kitchen.

Get to a restaurant and have them cook food for you. And bring drinks to you too, so you will stay hydrated.

I ended up on the patio of a lovely restaurant one hot afternoon here in Toronto a few weeks ago. There were trees and a breeze and cold beer for hydration. Tasty fries, sublime duck pâté with bread to spread it on and a pea salad that was so delicious that I had to try it when I got home. The salad description: “spring peas… mâche, mint, smoked bacon vinaigrette”, helped me know what to look for when I was researching recipes.

This version used a recipe from Martha Stewart as a starting point. I altered the recipe a bit, using fresh peas, substituting sherry vinegar for white-wine vinegar and throwing a handful of arugula microgreens on top instead of mint. It tasted great!

Start by getting the bacon…

Bacon, pre-chopping

…and chopping it. I prefer slices which are smaller than 1/2″ and more haphazardly chopped than sliced.

Bacon, post-chopping.

Get the bacon into a fry and start cooking.

While the bacon is cooking, mince the shallots.

Minced shallots.

Fresh peas from Picton, Ontario. Frozen peas are all right, but fresh peas are better. The downside: the urge to “snack” on the peas until there are none left for the dish you’re making.

Fresh peas.

Get the tiny arugla out of the refrigerator.

Baby arugula.

When the bacon looks like this, add the minced shallots.

Crispy bacon.

When the shallots are browned, add the vinegar.

Adding the sherry vinegar (a whatfoodimade action shot™!).

Then pour in the peas. Toss the mixture to coat the peas in the pan sauce.

Adding the peas (another whatfoodimade action shot™!).

Into a bowl. You could eat them like this.

Into a bowl.

But they’re better with baby arugula (or mint).

Peas with Bacon Vinaigrette.

Peas with Bacon Vinaigrette.

The original recipe is here:

Peas with Bacon Vinaigrette
4 servings

The natural sweetness of peas pairs perfectly with salty bacon and fresh mint for a side that the whole family will love.

4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 small shallots, finely chopped
2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
1 bag (16 ounces) frozen peas, thawed
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped


1. Heat a skillet over medium. Add bacon and cook until bacon starts to crisp, 6 minutes. Add shallots to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent and starting to brown, 6 minutes.

2. Add vinegar and stir to combine. Add peas and cook, stirring occasionally, until warmed through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Top with mint leaves.


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