Recipe: Our Take on Tre Wilcox Snap Pea Puree

Santee Farmers Market Fresh: Snap Pea Puree inspired by Top Chef contestant Tre Wilcox.

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When Top Chef contestants and Tre Wilcox competed in a , the room was all smiles. The two have a comedic, playful, competitive nature and while different, their food styles are beautiful and delicious.

Though the judges declared Malarkey the winner on that hot afternoon in Santee, Wilcox's snap pea puree won my heart.

I have seen similar pea purees on menu's lately; both with seafood entrees at BoBeau in Ocean Beach and George's at the Cove's upstairs restaurant, California Modern in La Jolla.

Wilcox plated seared pork tenderloin and sauteed shitake mushrooms, along with a cucumber and onion marinated salad on the bed of pea puree.  It was fabulous. The seared mushroom with the puree was my favorite part. Creamy, green and bursting of spring, this recipe is quite versatile. 

I would serve it with fish, shrimp, calamari, pork, chicken, or even steak, perhaps tofu and mushrooms. I've seen recipes for pastas too. The protein options are endless.

Here's my take on Wilcox's snap pea puree based on the ingredients he shared with me at the :


1 pound of snap peas (sugar peas), ends snapped, usually available at the farmers market

1 clove of garlic, minced, try a locally grown clove from

1 medium yellow onion, chopped, available at the farmers market

1/2 cup (more if desired) heavy cream or half and half

1/2 stick of butter

small bunch of mint leaves (to taste), and usually have herbs

1tsp fresh lemon juice (lemons available at the farmers market or your neighbor's tree)

salt to taste


Gently saute onion with pinch of salt in butter until translucent.  Add garlic and snap peas and cook on low until soft.  Puree vegetables and cream in blender until smooth. Salt to taste. Add mint leaves and puree until well blended. Add lemon juice at the end and serve with desired entree.


Prep time: 5 mins

Cooking time: 20 mins

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