I love peas, and I’m sad about the bad rap they have in the US. When I lived in Paris, one of my favorite lunches at this little “plat du jour’ bar restaurant where... I ate most days, consisted of a grilled Toulouse sausage accompanied by minty pea puree. It was simply heavenly. This recipe is the nearest thing to that delicious side. It makes a protein-packed vitamin-rich alternative to mashed potatoes, and its amazing greenness and sweetness should tempt even the most reluctant kids to eat their peas — maybe without even knowing it.
Bring a quart of salted water to a boil. Add the peas and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Drain.
In a food processor, blend the blanched peas, Parmesan, mint, yogurt, salt and garlic, if using. Taste for seasoning and serve at room temperature with boiled new potatoes or grilled, poached or roasted chicken.