Spring is here and fresh peas are just starting to pop up in farmers markets and grocery stores. Peas are used quite readily as a side dish or in soups and pot pies, but adding them to seasonal dishes creates a freshness that is hard to beat this season. The fresh green flavor is mild and sweet and builds another textural dimension to most meals.
This Crispy Chicken with Spring Peas is both simple and delicious. I used chicken thighs because the meat is succulent and sweet, but if you prefer white meat – chicken breasts can be substituted. If you can’t find fresh peas, frozen peas can be used in this dish too – easy to find and super inexpensive.
6 chicken thighs – skin on, deboned
1 tablespoon Dijon Mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 cup olive oil + more for cooking
3 slices cooked ham – cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups fresh or frozen peas
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped
5 basil leaves, chopped
1 tablespoons butter
1 cup brown rice, optional
1. Place mustard, white wine, olive oil and garlic in a medium bowl, whisk together. Add chicken and marinate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Remove chicken from marinade and blot with paper towels.
2. In a large skillet over medium high heat, add ham. Saute until lightly browned and remove from skillet, set aside.
3. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to skillet with 1 tablespoon butter, and place over medium high heat. Add chicken skin-side down and sear for 4 minutes, until deep golden brown. Flip chicken over and continue to cook for 4 minutes.
4. Add peas to skillet and cook for 3 minutes, until heated through. Pour in chicken broth and continue to cook, stir. Cook until liquid has reduced by half. Add cream to skillet and stir to combine. Cook for 2 minutes more until, or until sauce is slightly thickened. Add ham back into skillet and stir. Sprinkle with fresh herbs and serve over brown rice. Enjoy!