Summary: Sugar snap peas make me happy. I love their bright hue and crisp crunch! The saltiness of bacon and feta in concert with the sweetness of maple and mint buttress the peas in every way. This is a wonderful summer salad- hearty, flavorful, all elements shine.
- 4 slices bacon
- 3 cups sugar snap peas, washed and trimmed
- 2 tablespoons grade B maple syrup
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- freshly ground black pepper
- 15 mint leaves, sliced into ribbons
- 1x1x2" chunk of feta, crumbled
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.
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.
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.
Turn out onto a serving platter and enjoy!