Buttered Peas on Toast


by John Thorne 

When I first read about this dish in Nigel Slater’s rather hypnotic Kitchen Diaries, I thought, “Where have you been all my life?” I love fresh peas as fresh from the garden as I can get them and often eat a whole bowlful at night just before going to bed. Who thought I could have them for breakfast, too? You might point out that Nigel hadn’t meant this as a breakfast dish, which is true but irrelevant. I love fresh asparagus on toast for breakfast — heat minced garlic in butter in a small skillet until softened, add half a cup of water and bring it to a boil, put in asparagus cut into short lengths, cover, and cook for 7 or 8 minutes. Make toast, butter it if you’re in a luxuriant mood, and pour over the contents of the skillet. What are you waiting for? Eat.

A dish of buttered peas on toast is made exactly the same way, except that the peas take longer to cook, say 12 minutes or so. If you’re that sort of person, you could top it with a poached egg, but I like the dish just the way you see it in the photo.  

Provenance: The peas are from Atkins Farm Country Market, the bread is cut from a natural-leavened sourdough bâtard from Hungry Ghost Bread, the butter is from High Lawn Farm in Lee MA, and the garlic is from … China?  

Copyright © John Thorne 2010


Posted in Recipes


  1. ktchntrvwr said...

    This is so British colonial India. It would be something served to me for breakfast.

  2. djgibboni said...

    Sounds great. I’ll try the asparagus idea. But Chinese garlic — boo, hiss!

  3. HeightsCat said...

    Why not buy California garlic (or, even better, locally grown garlic from the farmers’ market?

  4. Samantha said...

    Ah John – have you managed to get your hands on a copy of Nigel Slater’s new vegetable tome ‘Tender’ yet??? It is glorious.

  5. johnthorne said...

    Come on, folks, that comment about garlic was an attempt at what the French call "hugh-mehr". Yes, Samantha, I do have Nigel’s new book. Because I have about a hundred cookbooks waiting for me by the reading chair, though, I haven’t done much beyond flipping through it. But I’m a great fan of his, so … soon.

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