Green and Golden Snap Peas with Poached Chicken


Elegant summer dining al fresco. photo by Nancy Duran

It’s not often that I come across a vegetable I haven’t tried. But last week at the TaSH Farmer’s Market, I did just that. Purdy’s Farmer and the Fish based out of North Salem were featuring golden sugar snap peas, the first I’ve ever heard of them. So I snapped them up and created this lovely summer salad. If you haven’t had them before, golden snap peas are like a mellow version of their greener cousins, certainly not as sweet. For that reason, I recommend pairing them with green sugar snaps, as I do here. If you can’t lay your hands on the golden variety, fear not. This salad will work beautifully with green alone.

Serves 4

3/4 pound mixed green and golden snap peas, strings removed
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
1/2 small red onion (or 1/4 medium red onion), very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 cups firmly packed baby arugula
Handful fresh baby mint leaves
Handful fresh baby basil leaves
Sea salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon red chile flakes (optional)

  1. Prepare an ice bath for the snap peas by placing a handful of ice in a medium bowl and filling the bowl with cold water. This will stop the snap peas from cooking after you’ve removed them from the pot of boiling water.
  2. Bring a medium pot of water to the boil over high heat. Add the snap peas and cook about 11/2 minutes, until crisp-tender. Remove with a slotted spoon to the ice bath. Add the chicken to the pot. Bring back to the boil, reduce heat slightly to simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, until chicken is cooked through. Remove from the heat and let the chicken sit in the pot while you prepare the rest of the salad.
  3. Meanwhile, place the onion in a screw-top jar. Add the oil and lemon juice, seal, and shake well to combine. This will lightly pickle the red onion.
  4. Remove the chicken from the pot and thickly slice.
  5. In a large bowl, combine the arugula, drained snap peas, mint, basil, and sliced chicken. Pour the onion and dressing over the salad and toss gently to combine and coat. Season to taste with sea salt and sprinkle over the chile flakes (if you are using).

Nutritional analysis based on 4 servings (does not include sea salt to taste):
Calories 233, Fat 8g, Sodium 82g, Carbohydrate 10g, Fiber 3g, Sugar 8g, Protein 29g

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