Condley: Snow peas with butter and lemon

Published 6:30 pm Wednesday, June 29, 2022

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By Sarah Condley


Saturday morning came and I headed to our local farmer’s market; one of my favorite things to do in the summer time. While looking at all of the great vendor’s products I spotted what I thought were sugar snap peas at the My Father’s Garden booth. I told Molly I’d like a bag of sugar snap peas and she gently told me they were snow peas; I still wanted them. (The pods of snow peas are flatter with small, premature peas; sugar snap peas are more rounded and are a little more sweet – per a quick internet search.)

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After more time strolling Depot Street and making a couple more purchases I headed to the car and munched a couple of snow peas. When I got home, I decided I’d prepare the snow peas for supper and headed to the computer to search for a simple recipe. In no time I spotted a recipe for Snow Peas with Butter and Lemon and after reviewing it I knew it was the one I’d try. I found the recipe on The Spruce Eats website.

I read the recipe a couple of times and decided to make it simple by skipping the part where you are supposed to blanch the pea pods. I figured sautéing them would suffice.

When it was time to start preparing supper, I rinsed the peas and removed the strings. I only had enough peas to make half the recipe and that was fine since it’s just Brad and me. Cutting the recipe in half was no problem. Next, I toasted some slivered almonds in a small skillet. Toasting nuts on top of the stove doesn’t take much time but you gotta watch them close because they can burn in no time. Once the almonds were toasty, I poured them into a bowl and sat them aside.

To the skillet I’d used to toast the almonds, I added the butter and when it was melted and beginning to sizzle, I added the snow peas. We had a few shiitake mushrooms in the refrigerator that Brad had grown and I knew he’d like them in this dish so I’d sliced up a couple and added them to the pan to sauté with the pea pods. In about a minute the pods had turned bright green and I stirred in the lemon zest and almonds. After another minute I sprinkled in a little salt and pepper.

Supper was on the table and we were ready to eat after Brad blessed the food and thanked God for all he provides for us.

When serving myself the pea dish I avoided the mushrooms, leaving all of them for Brad because I don’t like them.

After bite number one of this bright summery dish I did sprinkle on a little more salt. After bite number two I was a fan. I asked Brad what he thought and he said it was really good and he loved the addition of the mushrooms.

This recipe falls into the “Nailed It” category and I’ll be making it again. I’m so glad that I spotted those snow peas at the Farmer’s Market. But since they are now out of season I’ll have to purchase snow peas at the grocery since the next time I make this dish.

The recipe did mention variations. It said the following ingredients would complement snow peas: mushrooms, garlic, ginger, parsley, basil, chervil, and peanuts. Add the mushrooms, garlic, and ginger to the butter along with the snow peas and add the herbs and peanuts toward the end of cooking. Don’t hesitate to give this recipe a try and put your own spin on it.


• 12 to 16 ounces fresh snow peas

• 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste

• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

• 1 lemon, zested

• 1/4 to 1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted, optional

• Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Cooking Instructions

• Break the stem ends off of the snow peas and pull off the strings, Rinse well.

• Fill a medium saucepan with about 2 quarts of water and 2 teaspoons of salt. Bring the water to a boil over high heat.

• Add the snow peas and let the water return to a boil.

• Boil the pea pods for 30 to 45 seconds. Don’t overcook them or they will lose their crunch.

• Immediately drain the peas in a colander.

• Wipe out the pan, making sure it is dry. Add the butter to the pan and place it over medium heat.

• When the butter begins to sizzle, add the drained snow peas.

• Sauté the pea pods in the butter, stirring, for about 1 minute.

• Add the lemon zest and toasted almonds (if using) and continue cooking for 1 minute.

• Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve and enjoy.