Meat lovers like superstar chef Mario Batali have recently turned pro-vegetable, favoring meat in smaller amounts—and in some dishes as a flavoring agent rather than the central component. Here, seven vegetable dishes that call for less than three ounces of meat per serving like a crunchy Asian pea salad with crunchy honeyed bacon.
Birmingham, Alabama, chef Chris Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club uses fresh field peas, like black-eyed peas, in his succotash, but green peas are nicely sweet. Finely diced thick-cut bacon give the succotash extra flavor.
This savory, sausage-accented main-course salad is as satisfying as it is restorative. "According to Thai belief, both peas and pea shoots are revitalizing, as well as good for digestion," Su-Mei Yu says. "And escarole strengthens muscles and bones."
This recipe is a nod to the pickled vegetables (giardiniera) in the Gramercy Tavern salad. Grace Parisi quickly soaks baby cauliflower in vinegar and sugar, then combines it with snap peas, white beans, ham and sunflower seeds to create a unique main-course dish.