Ricotta with organic peas, broad beans and gremolata

This simple vegetarian starter recipe from Tom Aikens makes delicious organic peas and broad beans the real hero of the dish. Lightly dressed in a zingy lemon sauce, the vegetables are served on a bed of fragrant herb gremolata and creamy ricotta for balance.

First published in 2016
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Ingredients

Metric

Imperial

Peas and beans

Gremolata

Lemon emulsion

Equipment

  • Ice
  • Blender

Method

1
Begin by blanching the vegetables. Bring a pan of water to the boil over a medium-high heat and stir in the salt and sugar. Blanch the peas for 45 seconds or until just soft, then remove from the pan using a slotted spoon and refresh immediately in iced water. Once cooled, drain the peas and set aside until required
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 pinch of caster sugar
  • 4 tbsp of peas, organic
2
Keeping the pan on the heat, bring the water back up to the boil and add the broad beans. Simmer for 1–2 minutes, then drain and plunge into the iced water to cool. Pod the broad beans to remove the outer skins and set aside
3
For the gremolata, add the fresh herbs, garlic, lemon, salt, sugar and oil to a blender and blitz to form a coarse purée. Check the seasoning and set aside until ready to serve
4
To make the lemon emulsion, place the egg yolk, lemon zest and juice, sugar and seasoning in a clean blender. Begin blending together and, as the mixture thickens, slowly trickle in both the oils until thick and smooth. Add a little water to loosen if required, then pour over the peas and beans and mix until evenly coated
5
To serve, beat the ricotta to loosen it slightly and divide it between serving plates. Make a well in the centre and spoon in a pool of the gremolata then scatter over the peas and beans. Garnish with fresh pea shoots and herbs, and a little freshly grated lemon zest and seasoning

Tom Aikens is one of the most creative and talented chefs Britain has ever seen, with a restaurant empire to match.

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