Cook the Book: Fresh Peas with Lettuce and Green Garlic

Cook the Book: Fresh Peas with Lettuce and Green Garlic

[Photographs: John Kernick]

Andrea Reusing has a wonderfully restrained way of writing recipes. In Cooking in the Moment, she assumes that you are dealing with gorgeously fresh, seasonal produce and her recipes are designed to make sure that the pure flavors of those fruits and vegetables are what you're tasting.

On paper, this recipe for Fresh Peas with Lettuce and Green Garlic couldn't be simpler. Virtually all of the dish's ingredients are listed in the title save for salt, pepper, and butter. It's all about tender young peas, earthy leaves of wilted lettuce, mild green garlic, and enough sweet butter to bring the dish together. It's a recipe that's indicative of Reusing's approach to home cooking—simple techniques and superb use of in season ingredients.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Cooking in the Moment to give away this week.

Adapted from Cooking in the Moment by Andrea Reusing. Copyright © 2011. Published by Clarkson Potter. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved.

  • Yield:4
  • Active time: 10 minutes
  • Total time:10 minutes


  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 5 small stalks green garlic, any tough parts trimmed, sliced into very thin rounds
  • Kosher salt
  • 1½ cups fresh or frozen shelled green peas
  • 2 small heads of butter lettuce, washed and torn into pieces
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. 1.

    Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a medium sauté pan over low heat. Add the green garlic and a pinch of salt. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 2 to 3 minutes, until the garlic is tender and fragrant but with no color. Add the peas and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until they are tender and sweet. Stir in the lettuce and the remaining 2 tablespoons butter; add 1 tablespoon water if the mixture seems dry. Remove the pan from the heat and toss gently until the lettuce wilts and the butter melts. Season with fresh pepper and additional salt if needed.