Perfect Peas in a Pod

Since my site is called “Two Peas in a Pod,” I feel justly compelled to start with some simple, healthy and delicious peapod recipes. Sugar snap peas are in season and plentiful right now, so you should be able to find them in your favorite market for a reasonable price. They’re also high in vitamins C and A, potassium and fiber. Win-win-win!! I know I get sick and tired of the same old vegetables, and snap peas are a great alternative. There are many ways to prepare snap peas — steamed or blanched for a bright, crisp side dish; eaten raw with a dip or on a salad; sauteed or roasted — but regardless of the technique, I tend to prefer them when they still retain their innate crunchy goodness.

It’s tricky not to overcook snap peas because they can go from bright and snappy to mushy and grey in the blink of an eye; but if you’re patient and attentive, they will be perfect every time.

How to Prepare Perfectly Snappy Sugar Snap Peas

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the peapods and turn down the flame just a bit so that there’s still a nice, gentle rolling boil. Blanching will take only a few minutes, literally, so don’t move away from the stove. Using an easy-to-understand comparative model, assume that your peas will take 3 mins for rare (still crunchy), 3 1/2 mins for med rare and 4 mins for medium well (al dente). Anything over that, and they will be overcooked. Set a timer because, if you’re anything like me, you’ll walk away for just a minute, and forget about them. When the timer sounds, pull out one of the smaller ones and taste for doneness (remember: they will continue to cook even after they’ve been removed from the pot). Once they’re done to your specifications, drain them in a colander and immediately flush them in very cold water (better yet, put them in an ice bath, if you’re so inclined). Toss the peas around in the cold water until they are cooled and the cooking process has been halted. Drain the peas and then lay out on paper towels to dry.

Lake Michigan Dip

IMG_1569

This recipe is a variation of Lake Charles Dip that my mom used to make when I was growing up in Atlanta. She found it in one of her Southern cookbooks, and it became an immediate favorite of mine. I’ve made a few minor adjustments over the years and renamed it for the lake on which I live now. I’ve been making this for many, many years for family and friends. Every time I make it for someone new, they inevitably ask for the recipe (which can be a little embarrassing to be honest because it’s SO simple to make). Literally, there are 4 ingredients. Yep, you read that correctly — 4 ingredients.

Lake Michigan Dip

  • Time: 10 minutes
  • Difficulty: simple
  • Print

A deliciously simple dip for any occasion.

Ingredients

  • 1 large container of sour cream (you can use light sour cream, but I prefer the smoother texture of regular)
  • 1 pkg Good Seasons Italian Salad Dressing Mix
  • 1 plum tomato, chopped and seeded
  • 1 avocado, diced

Directions

In a medium bowl, mix the seasoning packet into the sour cream and add the chopped, seeded tomato. Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour (but longer is preferable) to let the flavors meld. Just before serving, fold in the diced avocado (it will turn brown if added too early). Serve dip with raw or blanched peapods, cucumbers, baby carrots and sliced bell pepper. If you’re feeling a little naughty, serve it with kettle chips or pita chips…but be careful, it’s ridiculously addicting. Every bite is like a mini-treasure hunt, digging around to find the chunks of avocado.

This delicious recipe brought to you by: 2peasinapod.online

Be prepared for someone to ask you for the recipe. But don’t give away how easy it is! That’s our little secret.

IMG_1639
An old-school mix that’s still relevant in today’s modern kitchen!

 

Quick Curry Dip

  • Time: 5 minutes
  • Difficulty: simple
  • Print

A ridiculously simple recipe that packs a punch.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of salt

Directions

Mix together all ingredients in a small bowl. Serve with raw or blanched peapods. Makes a great appetizer or side dish.

 

This delicious recipe brought to you by: 2peasinapod.online


Blistered Snap Peas with Basil Oil and Garlic

These basil- and garlic-infused sugar snap peas will get snapped right up!

  • ¾ lb sugar snap peas
  • Medium garlic clove, slivered
  • 1 Tbl EVOO
  • Basil oil* (see separate recipe in “Got Herbs?” post on Sept. 3, 2016)
  • Lemon juice
  • Sprig of basil
  • Salt, pepper

Heat the olive oil in deep sautee pan over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the sugar snap peas and spread out in a single layer so that as many peas as possible touch the bottom of the pan.

IMG_1578

Add a pinch or two of kosher salt to your liking. Once the bottoms start to turn brown and blister (1-2 minutes), toss the peas to brown on the other sides. After about 3-4 minutes, remove them from the heat and let the pan cool a bit (remember: you want the peas to be al dente). Return the pan to the burner over medium-low heat. Move the peas to the side of the pan and place about a half tablespoon of the basil oil (or regular olive oil) in the center. Once the basil oil is warm, add the slivered garlic to sautee for a minute or two, until fragrant and slightly golden. (Rule #1 of cooking: never burn the garlic. If it burns, throw it out and start over. Burnt garlic will ruin a dish.)

IMG_1580

When the garlic is golden, toss it and the basil oil with the peas and immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a cool serving platter. The peas WILL continue to cook, so err on the side of under-cooking them vs overcooking them. Wait for the peas to cool before adding a squeeze of lemon and some julienned basil (the basil will brown if added too early). Season with additional salt, if necessary

*If you don’t have basil oil, just sautee the garlic in a dab of EVOO and add more julienned fresh basil at the end or add a dollop of jarred pesto.


Blistered Sugar Snap Peas with Basil Oil

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 15 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

These basil- and garlic-infused snap peas will get snapped right up!

Ingredients

  • ¾ lb sugar snap peas
  • Medium garlic clove, slivered
  • 1 Tbl EVOO
  • Basil oil* (see separate recipe in “Got Herbs?” post on Sept. 3, 2016)
  • Lemon juice
  • Sprig of basil
  • Salt, pepper

Directions

Heat the olive oil in deep sautee pan over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the sugar snap peas and spread out in a single layer so that as many peas as possible touch the bottom of the pan.

Add a pinch or two of kosher salt to your liking. Once the bottoms start to turn brown and blister (1-2 minutes), toss the peas to brown on the other sides. After about 3-4 minutes, remove them from the heat and let the pan cool a bit (remember: you want the peas to be al dente). Return the pan to the burner over medium-low heat. Move the peas to the side of the pan and place about a half tablespoon of the basil oil (or regular olive oil) in the center. Once the basil oil is warm, add the slivered garlic to sautee for a minute or two, until fragrant and slightly golden. (Rule #1 of cooking: never burn the garlic. If it burns, throw it out and start over. Burnt garlic will ruin a dish.)

When the garlic is golden, toss it and the basil oil with the peas and immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a cool serving platter. The peas WILL continue to cook, so err on the side of under-cooking them vs overcooking them. Wait for the peas to cool before adding a squeeze of lemon and some julienned basil (the basil will brown if added too early). Season with additional salt, if necessary

*If you don’t have basil oil, just sautee the garlic in a dab of EVOO and add more julienned fresh basil at the end or add a dollop of jarred pesto.

This delicious recipe brought to you by 2peasinapod.online

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s