Pesto and Peas Salad

Pesto and Peas Salad
Still seeking to rid my freezer of orphaned ingredients, (the “theme” for my last dinner party,) this easy green salad, a favorite amongst my friends, popped into my mind. Perfect for barbecues, potlucks, buffets, or whatever. This time of year I’m getting bombarded with basil. I love throwing the leaves into a salad or using in all sorts of dishes and desserts, but still can’t use them up fast enough in cooking so I am furiously making batches of pesto this time of year. Pesto is like summer in a jar to me. I can’t stand to not have it in the house. The problem is, I still have some from the last time I was hoarding pesto and this irritates my man. He just doesn’t agree that you can’t have too much of it.

If you must, you can throw this together with store bought pesto but if you do, be sure to refresh it with a few tablespoons of lemon juice. Even though my pesto was homemade I still used it to refresh a batch I had made several months ago. In addition, I drizzled some over the finished dish to give it just a bit more tang. This salad just can’t fail. This time around I skipped the pine nuts as I was already using them in something else that night. Try this as a bed on which to serve grilled or broiled salmon. You’re welcome.

Pesto and Peas Salad

Pesto and Peas Salad

Pesto and Peas Salad

Pesto and Peas Salad

adapted from Ina Garten

This is what you will need:

  • 2 1/2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 4 tablespoons pesto, recipe follows
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons pignolis, toasted – optional
  • 1 T grated parmesan cheese

This is how you make it:

  1. Cook the peas in a pot of boiling salted water for 1 minute.
  2. Immediately immerse the peas in a bowl of ice cold water, and drain when fully cooled.
  3. To assemble, place the spinach leaves in a salad bowl.
  4. Sprinkle the peas over the spinach.
  5. Add the pesto and toss.
  6. Dust lightly with parmesan, toasted pine nuts, or both.


To toast pignolis, place them in a dry saute pan and cook over medium heat for about 4 minutes, until evenly browned, tossing frequently.

So here is my refrigerator just before this last dinner party. I would like to get a larger one someday. Sigh.


About Trevor Kensey

To be truthful, I don't know what “Sis. Boom. [blog!]" means either. The name implies something explosive just happened I suppose I would like it if each post would make made a small 'boom' in your day or at least a fizzle. Even though a recipe is included with every post I have a hard time calling this a "food blog" or even myself a "food blogger".

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  1. I was just thinking I needed to make some pesto! My basil is out of control this year…I just can’t wait for the tomatoes to catch up so I can make some Caprese salads.

    Oh, and, FYI, you don’t need a bigger refrigerator…you need a SECOND refrigerator;)

  2. Did I miss the pesto recipe? I’m actually planning on making some tomorrow to make use of all of my garden’s basil… yum!

  3. I use Cindy’s pesto recipe mostly. More often than not I skip the parsley as I don’t have it handy but I never skip the lemon juice. It is the secret: