Fresh, pretty, and oh-so-healthy, this salad is really all about simply cooked spring vegetables. Peas, asparagus, and haricots verts combine to make a sublime combination that’s as tasty as it looks. I love mint and basil leaves scattered around, and I also add tarragon and parsley, but you can certainly use only one herb or a combination of whatever you have.
A simple vinaigrette with champagne vinegar, olive oil, and lemon juice is all I need to dress it up. Do dress the salad when the vegetables are warm, as they will absorb the flavors better, but leave adding the herbs until just before serving, as they will wilt if mixed with the warm ingredients. Keep the salad in the fridge, covered, until ready to serve.
Serves 4 as a main, 6 as a side
- 12 ounces haricots verts (French green beans), trimmed
- 1 pound thin green asparagus, trimmed (about 1 inch from the bottom) and cut to same size as haricots verts
- 10 ounces fresh peas
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, stems removed
- 1/4 cup parsley, stems removed
- 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, chopped
In a sauté pan filled with 1/2 inch of boiling water, cook the asparagus and haricots verts for about 4 to 6 minutes, or until slightly tender but still firm and crisp. Strain, pat dry, and place in a salad bowl. Cover with aluminum foil to just keep warm.
In a saucepan filled with 1 inch of boiling water, cook the peas until just tender, about 3 minutes. Strain, add to the bowl of asparagus and beans, and keep covered with the foil.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the vegetables, toss carefully, and chill.
Just before serving, garnish the salad with the fresh herbs. Serve cold.