2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
1 whole dried chile de árbol*
1 fresh mint sprig
1 garlic clove, minced
3 cups fresh or frozen peas
Generous pinch of sugar
PreparationHeat oil, butter, chile, and mint in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat 2 minutes. Add garlic and stir 1 minute. Stir in peas and sugar; cook until peas are just tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Discard chile and mint sprig. Transfer pea mixture to processor and puree until almost smooth (some texture should remain). Season puree to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 2 hours ahead. Let puree stand at room temperature. Rewarm in microwave oven on high about 2 minutes.)
*A small, bright red chile that's available at some supermarkets and specialty foods stores and at Latin markets.