½ pound French green beans, blanched
½ pound frozen peas, blanched
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and blanched
1 – 14 ounce can of artichoke hearts, quartered
3 celery stalks, sliced thin on the diagonal
½ – 5 ounce container of arugula
Shredded chicken ( I used breast meat from a rotisserie chicken)
1 C basil pesto
1/3 C toasted pine nuts
Parmesan Reggiano shavings
EVOO for drizzling
For blanching: Fill a stock pot half full with water and cover. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, add 1 T salt and drop in green beans. When color becomes vibrant and “Spring” green, remove French beans to an ice bath. Repeat the same procedure for the peas and asparagus. The asparagus and green beans will soften a little more after cooling in the ice bath. Please do not overcook the vegetables. A bit of “tooth” is desirable. Drain all vegetables and place on a towel-lined cookie sheet for further drying. Place in the refrigerator. This can be done earlier in the day for night-time service.
To assemble: place green beans, peas, asparagus, artichokes, celery, chicken, arugula and pesto in a mixing bowl. Toss gently (hands work best) making sure to evenly coat all ingredients with the pesto. Season with additional salt and cracked pepper. If mix looks a bit dry, add a spritz of EVOO. Place salad on individual plates and garnish with parm shavings, toasted pine nuts, and a kiss of EVOO.
This with good bread and Dry Creek Fume Blanc or Bending Branch Picpoul Blanc….perfect summer meal. Enjoy!