Food & Drink

Lady Pea Salad

Serves 4

A refreshing, herby vinaigrette livens up lady peas for a bright side dish

Photo: Amber Wilson

Nashville-based writer and photographer Amber Wilson’s new cookbook, For the Love of the South: Recipes and Stories from My Southern Kitchen is an ode to Wilson’s Louisiana childhood, current life in Nashville, and all the dishes she makes—and photographs elegantly—for her family. This one is a light and refreshing side that can be made with your favorite field pea.


    • 1 serrano pepper or red chili, seeded and finely chopped

    • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped

    • 1 tbsp. finely chopped mint leaves

    • 1 tbsp. finely chopped basil leaves, plus a few whole leaves for garnish

    • ¼ cup olive oil

    • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar

    • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

    • Kosher salt

    • Freshly ground black pepper

    • 2 cups fresh or frozen lady peas

    • Extra-virgin olive oil, to finish


  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the serrano pepper, garlic, mint, basil, olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Cover the dressing and refrigerate while you prepare the lady peas.

  2. In a medium saucepan, combine the lady peas and 3 cups cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer, partially cover, and cook until the beans are tender, about 30 minutes. Stir occasionally, skimming any natural foam that rises to the top.

  3. Drain the lady peas, transfer to the bowl with the vinaigrette, and toss. Scatter a few more basil leaves on top and finish with a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.

  4. Note: This salad can be prepared ahead of time—simply cover and refrigerate for up to two days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Excerpted from the book: FOR THE LOVE OF THE SOUTH by Amber Wilson. Copyright 2018 by Amber Wilson. Reprinted courtesy of Harper Design, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.