Pasta with Snap Peas, Basil, & Olives

pasta with snap peas

Here’s a dish filled with my favorite things: pasta, fresh vegetables, olives, basil, and hella garlic. Cooking the garlic slowly over low heat brings out all sorts of wonderful (and keeps it from getting bitter); the lemon zest keeps things bright.  The hemp seeds aren’t entirely necessary, but are tasty and full of protein and essential fatty acids (EFAs).  I keep a bag in my freezer for sprinkling on things like salad and avocado toast.  If you can’t find snap peas, substitute frozen peas, preferably the petite kind.  Simply add to the pasta water a minute or so before draining time.


12 oz pasta (I used this kind)
8 oz (about 2 cups) snap peas
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 tbsp olive oil, plus a bit more
zest from 1 lemon
2-3 tbsp shelled hemp seeds (optional)
heaping ¼ cup of olives, preferably kalamata, pitted and halved
generous handful of fresh basil leaves
salt and pepper, to taste

  • To make snap peas: Set a pot of salted water to boil. Prepare a bowl of ice water. Cook peas in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Drain and immediately place in ice water to stop the cooking. Set aside.
  • Cook garlic in oil in small pan over very low heat, agitating now and then, for 10-15 minutes, til translucent and very fragrant.
  • Meanwhile, cook pasta in salted water according to package directions. When done (and drained), toss with garlic and oil, snap peas, lemon zest, and olives. Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle on hemp seeds, drizzle with a tiny bit more olive oil, and tear in the basil. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Yield: About 4 servings

snap peas



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