Once thought of as a chore, many people now jump at the chance to spend an afternoon on the back porch, shelling peas with their family. You can find many different varieties at the farmers’ market these days, including crowder peas, black-eyed peas, purple hulls, and lady peas. If you’re shopping for unshelled field peas, it can be hard to know how many pounds of pods to buy for a recipe calling for a specific amount. Depending on the variety of legume (some pods contain more peas than others), ¾ pound of unshelled pods will yield roughly one cup field peas. (Fresh field peas freeze beautifully, so buy enough to put some up for the winter.) Once you have a pile of freshly shelled peas, you’ll want to show them off. This deliciously simple Field Pea, Corn, and Bacon Salad is the perfect way to exhibit the flavors of the summer season. Fresh field peas are cooked with minced onion and sweet corn kernels in bacon drippings until the peas are tender. The mixture is drizzled with our Summer Sauce (a bright herb vinaigrette made with mint, basil, and parsley) and topped with crispy chopped bacon. Serve this recipe as a side dish alongside grilled shrimp, chicken, or steak or make it a more filling main dish salad by tossing the cooked field pea mixture with a few handfuls of mixed baby greens. However you enjoy this easy salad, it will find a regular place in your summer recipe rotation.
Cook chopped bacon in a skillet over medium until crisp. Transfer bacon to a plate lined with paper towels; reserve 1 tablespoon drippings in skillet. Reduce heat to medium. Add peas, corn, onion, and water to skillet. Cook until peas are tender, about 7 minutes. Stir in bacon and Summer Sauce. Serve warm.