Sugar Snaps with Bacon, Maple, Feta and Mint

By em-i-lis
June 6, 2012
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Author Notes: The fava beans and sugar snap peas at my local farmers market last week were incredible. I went bananas and bought huge bags of each. With the favas, I knew I'd make some crostini, and last night my hubby and I ate just that slathered atop slices of oiled, toasted baguette. Divine.
I was less sure about what direction to take with the sugar snaps. My sons and I like to eat them raw, but I also wanted to turn some of them into a more substantial dish, and a summery salad sounded great. This one is hearty, creamy, crunchy and savory, and I like the way the flavors complement each other yet shine individually. We think it's pretty great!

Serves: 2-4

  • 4 slices bacon
  • 3 cups sugar snap peas, washed and trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons grade B maple syrup
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 15 mint leaves, sliced into ribbons
  • 1x1x2" chunk of feta, crumbled
  1. Fill a 4 quart pot 1/2 - 3/4 full with water and then add about a tablespoon of salt. Set to boil. In a 10" skillet set over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate to drain. Pour out from the skillet all but 1 tablespoon of the drippings; set the skillet and drippings aside.
  2. When the water is boiling, add the sugar snap peas and cook 1-2 minutes until crisp-tender. Drain and run cold water over the peas until they're cool. Set the skillet with the drippings over medium heat, and when warm, add the maple syrup, garlic and 1/2 teaspoon salt. When the syrup has dissolved and the garlic has softened some, add the cool sugar snaps to the skillet, tossing to combine everything and warm through, just about a minute.
  3. Pour everything from the skillet into a mixing bowl, scraping out any good bits that have stuck to the bottom, and add the mint and crumbled feta. Sprinkle with another 1/4 tsp of salt and a generous few grinds of black pepper. Crumble the reserved 4 bacon strips over the top and toss to combine. You want the feta to "melt" some; its creaminess plus the maple-bacon pan sauce makes the dressing here. Check the seasoning and add more salt if needed.
  4. Turn out onto a serving platter and enjoy!

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