Thursday, April 14, 2011

Braised Peas with Scallions and Lettuce

Ever on the lookout for new ways to serve green vegetables, I marked this recipe in a recent issue of Better Homes and Gardens and went out to shop for ingredients. In the meantime, my sister-in-law ended up in the hospital for a few days and I took her a stack of magazines to read, including the one with this recipe. I hunted for it on line and was happy to find it here:

I didn't even start dinner last night until 8:15 or so, after choir practice, so I needed something nutritious that could be prepared quickly. I put a package of salmon fillets in the oven, set DS to preparing whole wheat macaroni and cheese, and started chopping green onions and romaine lettuce. Dinner was on the table in a half an hour and the new recipe proved very tasty, an excellent vehicle for serving green vegetables, including the season's very first harvest of fresh mint from our yard. The picture shows how it looked in the pan; it looked even better next to the orange of the salmon and the yellow of the macaroni and cheese, but I was too hungry to think about taking another picture.

This recipe is by British chef Jamie Oliver, whose "Food Revolution" has sparked more than a little controversy on this side of the pond. Jamie crusades to make school lunches healthier, occasionally putting himself at odds with budget-strapped school systems and frankly, people who just don't want a guy with a chopping knife and an English accent telling them what to do. Not having been much of a fan of peas as a child myself, I'm not sure how this recipe would fare in an Indiana school cafeteria, but DS liked it, praising the tangy flavor, and he backed up the praise by eating two or three helpings. The nutritional content is impressive: 142 calories, only 5 grams of fat, 4 mg of cholesterol, low in sodium, carbs and sugar, a decent level of fiber and protein and 55% of your recommended daily allowance of vitamin C. Two thumbs way, way up!

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