I’ve never known anyone, very young or old, who didn’t like this rather unlikely sounding combination of ingredients. Apart from its taste, the great advantage of this cooked salad is that it can be made well in advance, so it is practical for larger gatherings. You can serve it with cold chicken or meat or, for a light meal, simply on its own, accompanied by good crusty bread.
Slice the olives roughly. Cut the pepper in half lengthways, discard the seeds and stem, then slice across very thinly, using a food processor. Peel the ginger and garlic and chop finely. Now put these prepared ingredients into a saucepan with all the remaining ingredients except the mint, parsley and seasoning. Cover the pan and cook gently, stirring around once or twice, for 15 minutes. Then remove from the heat, season to taste with salt and black pepper and leave to cool.
Chop the mint finely and the parsley rather less so. Stir the herbs into the cooled pea mixture and spoon into a serving bowl. If the salad has been sitting in the bowl for some time before you eat, stir it again to coat it with the juices at the last moment. Eat at room temperature, not chilled.
© 1997 Josceline Dimbleby. All rights reserved.