I can eat pea tendrils any way imaginable and still be astounded by their bright “pea’ey” flavor, especially after not having them for some time. While pea tendrils are available only in the spring normally across the country, California’s pseudo-spring that is our winter makes them available in January and February and then again later in the year.I like to use shallots in this dish instead of more powerful yellow onions as I really want to let the pea tendrils and their delicate yet potent flavor shine.The best smell. Make sure you brown the garlic a bit before adding the chicken broth.Like all things you can eat raw, especially good vegetables, do not overcook these. I like mine just barely wilted.I used Pecorino Romano here as I wanted something tangier and brighter than Parmigiano Reggiano.This is a quick dinner that is light yet still comforting. Cook enough pea tendrils to have the next day cold right out of the refrigerator. I eat them for breakfast.
– 1 lb Pea Tendrils
– 1 large shallot
– 1 lemon for juice
– 3 to 6 cloves of garlic
– 2 Eggs
– Wedge of a hard salty cheese for grating such as Pecorino or Parmesan
– 1/2 cup of low-sodium chicken broth “or just enough to barely cover the bottom of your pan”
– Salt and Pepper
1) Wash and dry the pea tendrils well.
2) Mince the shallot and garlic. Sauté both till the garlic is just beginning to brown. Add the chicken broth, enough to barely cover the bottom of pot, and heat until the broth is just beginning to steam. Then add the pea tendrils and a pinch of salt.
3) Vigorously stir the pea tendrils to ensure even cooking. Pea tendrils should take approximately 3-5 minutes to cook depending upon the heat of your stove and the desired level of tenderness. I find that putting the top of the pan on for a bit helps and keeps the liquid pungent. Right before removing the pea tendrils, squeeze the juice of one lemon and mix well.
4) Place hot pea tendrils on a plate. Season with fresh pepper and add a just fried egg to the top. Grate as much cheese as you desire. Break the yoke and dig in.