Recipe from David Schuttenberg, Kwei Fei, Charleston
½ pound Anson Mills Sea Island red peas
½ onion with root end intact, peeled*
½ head garlic with root end intact*
Salt to taste
6 baby bok choy heads
1 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
4 tablespoons canola oil
1 pound Chinese-style wheat noodles
6 cups mushroom stock
Splash of rice vinegar
Garnish: Sesame oil, chile oil, and thinly sliced scallion greens
*Leaving the root ends intact makes the onion and garlic easier to remove after the peas are cooked. If you opt for garlic cloves instead, peel and lightly crush them.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Rinse peas, transfer to a pot, and cover with 2 inches of cold water. Add onion and garlic. Season lightly with salt, then bring to a simmer over low heat. Stirring regularly, cook peas until soft, but not mushy. Drain peas and spread out on a sheet tray, discarding onion and garlic. Set aside in refrigerator to cool.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil and prepare an ice bath. Cut root ends off bok choy and separate heads into individual leaves. Blanch until leaves are just tender, then transfer to ice bath. Divide bok choy between six soup bowls.
In a mixing bowl, toss mushrooms in oil and salt. Spread on a sheet tray and roast until golden brown, about 7 minutes. Allow to cool, then thinly slice. Divide among soup bowls.
Meanwhile, bring a pot of lightly seasoned water to a boil. Boil pasta according to package instructions until al dente. While pasta is boiling, bring mushroom stock to a simmer. Season with salt and rice vinegar. Stir in peas and cook just long enough for peas to reheat.
When pasta is ready, drain and divide among soup bowls. Using a slotted spoon, transfer peas to bowls. Pour hot mushroom broth into bowls, then drizzle with sesame and chile oil. Top with sliced scallions and serve.