Sweet Pea Toasts with Spicy Coppa
Wente Vineyards Restaurant, Livermore, CA Adapted from The Casual Vineyard Table (Ten Speed Press, 2003)
Kimball Jones served these easy, pleasing hors d'oeuvres when he cooked at the Beard House. If you want to make the toasts vegetarian, Jones suggests substituting Parmesan cheese for the coppa. The recipe is reprinted with permission from The Casual Vineyard Table (2003) by Carolyn Wente and Kimball Jones.
- 2 cups shelled fresh sweet English peas (about 2 1/4 pounds in the pod)
- 2 teaspoons salt, plus extra kosher salt, to taste
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1/2 teaspoon finely minced lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh chervil or thyme
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 baguette
- 1/4 pound spicy coppa, very finely julienned
Preheat the broiler. Over high heat, bring a large saucepan of water and 2 tablespoons salt to a boil. Add the peas and cook until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain in a colander and transfer to a small food processor. Process until all the peas are broken down but not smooth. You do not want to pureé them completely; a little texture is just fine.
Transfer the peas to a bowl and add the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and chervil or thyme. Season with salt and pepper and mix well. Slice the baguette on a slight diagonal into 1/4-inch pieces. Place the bread on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Toast under the broiler until light golden brown.
To serve, spread the pea purée on the toasts and top with a little mound of coppa. Serve immediately.