This salad is best with very fresh, young peas that are tender enough to be eaten just barely blanched or even raw.
If using fresh peas, sample them. If they are young, sweet, and tender, keep them raw. If they are older and a bit tough, blanch them in a small pot of boiling salted water until just tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Drain and spread them on a baking sheet in a single layer to cool. If using frozen peas, thaw them by leaving them at room temperature or by running them under warm water.
In a small bowl, whisk the oil with the lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste.
Just before serving, toss the peas in a small bowl with 1 Tbs. of the dressing. Toss the butter lettuce, radishes, scallions, and herbs in a large bowl with just enough of the remaining dressing to lightly coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Arrange the salad on individual serving plates and top with the peas and the ricotta salata (if using).
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Perfect in every sense. Used frozen peas. Luckily the radishes were sweet - not hot.
I have made this salad countless times, and receive rave reviews every time. It has such a fresh springy flavor. I usually add a small handful of spearmint leaves from my garden, which, I think, makes it even better!
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