Black Pepper Peas and Roasted Asparagus

black pepper peas and roasted asparagus

Black Pepper Peas and Roasted Asparagus
serves 2-4 as a side dish

To make this ultra-springy side dish, I used my quick-roasting asparagus method.  Instead of roasting for the 20-25 minutes that most recipes call for, I only roast them for 6-10 minutes depending on the thickness.  I find this keeps them sweet and vegetal but also crispy and easy to cut through.  Longer cooking times make asparagus too stringy for me to enjoy.  The sauteeing of the peas is really to defrost and season them, which happens very quickly.  I add the rice vinegar to the peas to give them a little tart punch.  Keep in mind that acidic ingredients like vinegar will turn bright green vegetables an army green (see photo).  If you are serving this at a dinner party, add the vinegar right before serving if you want to keep that glorious green color fresh.

for roasted asparagus:
1 bunch asparagus, 2-3 inches of woody stems trimmed off
drizzle of grapeseed oil
sprinkle of salt

for black pepper peas:
dollop of ghee or drizzle of olive oil
pinch of red chile flakes
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup frozen peas
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
salt to taste
loads of black pepper

1. On a parchment-lined sheet tray, toss asparagus with oil and salt and roast for 6-10 minutes at 450 degrees.

2. While asparagus is in the oven, heat a medium skillet.  Add ghee or oil and saute red chile flake and garlic for 30 seconds.  Add peas, water, and rice vinegar and saute until peas are warm, about 2 minutes.  Season generously with black pepper and salt.

3. Top asparagus with peas and serve.  Serve alongside a protein or add edamame, fava beans or cooked quinoa to make a vegetarian entree.