Butter Poached Vegetables with Peas, Feta, Bacon & Dill
Ok, bear with me here…….before you all run away screaming “butter poached?? I’m on a diet - no way lady!!”, humour me and just read on for a moment.
Yes there is, ahem, a decent amount of butter and olive oil in here, BUT, if this is a side dish for 4 people, it’s actually not that naughty. Not only that, I find a fair bit of the poaching liquid is left in my bowl at the end of it, so you’re not eating all of it (although, I have been known to get a piece of crusty sourdough to mop it up - that’s actually a really bloody good thing to do by the way).
You know what they say, butter is flavour and this dish has it in spades, plus it has the most beautiful buttery, silky mouthfeel. Anyway it’s vegetables, so that kind of cancels out the bad, right?
Note: You can make this vegetarian by leaving out the bacon and swapping chicken stock for vegetable stock. I just have a thing for bacon with peas, so for me they just go together like Sonny & Cher.
Butter Poached Vegetables with Peas, Bacon, Feta & Dill
serves 4 (as a side) | prep + cook time = 35 minutes
80g unsalted butter
50ml olive oil
3 large potatoes, sliced 7mm thickness
1 bunch rainbow baby carrots (larger carrots sliced down the middle)
3 baby leeks, cut into 2cm lengths (white and pale green parts only)
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
120ml chicken stock
2 rashers bacon, diced (optional)
1 cup baby peas
80g feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbs dill fronds, roughly chopped
finely grated lemon zest of 1/2 lemon
Heat the butter and olive oil in a heavy based saucepan. Add the potatoes and cook for around 8 minutes. Don’t let the potatoes colour, the liquid should just be simmering. Give the pan a gentle shake occasionally to make sure the potatoes aren’t sticking to the bottom. Add the carrots, leeks and garlic and gently cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the stock, put the lid on and bring to a gentle simmer again. Cook for a further 10-15 minutes or until the veg is tender but not falling apart.
Whilst the veg is cooking, heat up a small frypan and cook the bacon until crispy. Set aside until required.
Once the veg is tender, add the peas and put the lid back on for 2-3 minutes. Remove lid and cook a further 5 minutes to reduce the sauce slightly (it should thicken up a little). Check for seasoning and add a little salt if required.
To serve, spoon the veg into bowls, making sure to get plenty of the poaching liquid, and sprinkle with lemon zest. Scatter with the feta, bacon bits and dill. Serve immediately.