This is a wonderful summer salad from Brixton Village’s Cornercopia, bursting with the flavours of an English market garden. It makes a great light lunch or starter and goes well with a glass of elderflower cordial or sparkling wine. It’s very flexible: the broad beans could be replaced with runner beans, fresh edamame beans or courgettes. Try a soft boiled egg or strained yogurt in place of the curd cheese. If you have them available, decorate the salad with pea shoots, mustard cress or nasturtiums.
- 200g baby broad beans, podded weight
- 200g peas, podded weight
- 1 spring onion, finely sliced
- 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
- juice and zest of 1 lemon
- large handful of fresh herb leaves — either mint, coriander, parsley, basil
- 200g curd cheese, ideally goat or ewe’s milk
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
You need to double pod the broad beans, first removing the velvety outer pods and then blanching the beans to remove the tough inner skins. Blanch the beans in boiling water for 60 seconds and then plunge them into iced water to refresh them. You can then slip the skins off to reveal the jewel green beans inside. Pod the peas and blanch and refresh as above.
In a large bowl, mix the podded broad beans and peas, the sliced spring onion, and half the herbs you are using with the grapeseed oil, lemon juice and zest. Gently toss it together and season well.
Transfer the dressed salad to a serving dish. Drop spoonfuls of curd cheese on top and scatter with the remaining herbs. Serve.
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Photograph by Joby Catto.