Fish and chips with mushy peas is a British staple, but, as peas are so prolific in the kitchen garden this week, I thought I’d shift things around and give peas centre stage. My pea salad, served with a Japanese-inspired miso dressing, and accompanying tempura fish and chips, provide a lower-calorie and more swimming-costume-friendly seaside fix

The humble pea may well be the oldest vegetable in our gardens, as it can be traced as far back as 6,000BC to Glastonbury in Somerset. The roots of a pea plant are beneficial to your vegetable beds because they’re full of nitrogen-fixing bacteria. After harvest, cut off stems at ground level and allow the roots to rot down to release nitrogen for the next crop.

Garden-pea salad with tempura fish and chips

Serves 4

Ingredients

Pea salad
250g garden peas
75g pea shoots
75g lambs lettuce
50g radishes, sliced
2 spring onions, sliced
A handful chopped mint

Seasoning
Miso dressing
1 clove garlic
1tbspn white miso paste
1tbspn mirin
2tbspn rice vinegar
Half a tbspn soy sauce
1tbspn sesame oil
1in piece ginger, grated

Tempura fish and chips
4 medium cod fillets cut into 8 goujons
150g cornflour
50g flour
250ml soda water
4 large floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper, peeled and cut into chips

Method

Place the salad ingredients into a bowl. Whisk the salad-dressing ingredients together and set aside. Wash and dry the chips before deep-fat frying in vegetable oil for 6-8 minutes at 140°C/220°F. Place on sheets of kitchen roll and keep warm in the oven while you cook the fish.

Whisk together the cornflour and flour in a bowl and continue to stir while slowly adding the soda water until it’s possible to make a figure of eight in the batter. You may need to add a little more soda water to get the right, light consistency of tempura batter.

Add seasoning as necessary. Coat the fish in the batter and, again, using a deep-fat fryer, fry the fish in vegetable oil for about 8-12 minutes at 180°C/350°F before placing it on kitchen roll to soak up any excess fat.

Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to ensure all the ingredients are well coated. Divide the salad between four plates; serve the chips in cups with the fish on side plates, allowing the pea salad to take all the glory.

More delicious recipes with peas

Peas as an accompaniment

Sauté garden peas, baby

onions and shredded lettuce together in a saucepan with a splash of

white wine, a knob of butter and crushed garlic. Fabulous with fish or

meat.

Pea purée with scallops and pancetta Cook garden peas with a little vegetable stock and add a splash of cream and chopped mint.
Purée and set aside. Wrap pancetta around scallops and fry them for a minute and a half each side.
To serve as a starter, place three spoonfuls of pea purée onto a plate and top each with a scallop.

Boil

pasta in a large saucepan. Meanwhile, fry a chopped onion in olive oil.

When soft, add two heaped tablespoons of pesto, the juice of a lemon,

pine nuts, a handful of halved cherry tomatoes and two handfuls of fresh

peas. Cook for a few minutes before adding the drained pasta. Sprinkle

with grated Parmesan and serve with a pea-shoot salad.

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