I’ve been making so many soups and stews recently, and loved every one of them, but lately I’ve been in the mood for light, bright, happy spring fare. The kind that seems redolent of the promise newly blooming in plants and trees all around. This recipe, adapted from one provided by Andrea Reusing, seemed perfect. Quick, easy, brilliantly verdant and freshly sweet. Ready in fewer than 10 minutes. Perfect for a sunny day.
The recipe is so easy, I have little to add to the directions presented below. If I were to say anything, it would be this. The lettuce wilts quickly, but still adds a wonderful texture and slight crunch to the dish when consumed immediately. If you don’t plan to eat right away, however, leave out the lettuce because it will reduce down to nothing. This recipe made with peas alone is still fantastic. All sweet and buttery with a hint of garlic and slight edge of pepper. Paulo and I ate the dish (with lettuce) accompanied by a Sardinian Costamolino, along with hunks of bread to soak up the juices. There were no leftovers.
Peas Sauteed with Butter Lettuce
1 T oil
2 T butter
4 fat cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups peas
2 small heads butter lettuce, leaves torn into large pieces
Heat the oil and 1 T butter in a large saute pan. Stir in the garlic until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the peas and saute until bright green and just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the lettuce, along with the remaining 1 T butter. Remove from the heat as soon as the lettuce starts to wilt. (It will continue to wilt in the residual heat.) Add a little more salt, if needed. Serve immediately.