It's the heart of the bounty-season here in northern climate country and with that comes the first of a few posts focusing on what is readily available both in the garden and at the local farmer's market. We are starting with peas.
Most of us think of peas in two categories: the shelling pea and peas with edible pods. I do enjoy both and as such am profiling them here in this post.
This year, I grew a rare heirloom variety sourced from a seed swap I attended back in April. Pictured here in two frames is the Golden Sweet Edible Pod (left, and bottom-right) along with a gardener's favorite, Green Arrow shelling pea (top-right).
Whether it's shelled or with the pod, peas offer nutrients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin K and a respectable amount of most B vitamins that together assist with normal blood clotting, provide anti-oxidant properties and bone support. Peas also contain minerals like Manganese that is good for the bones, skin, and blood sugar control.
Besides lots of nutrition found in these little bundles of goodness, they can be versatile to cook with. You'll find them in soups, stir-fries, salad, and even in dips. Enjoy them raw and fresh as the treat they're meant since these beauties are only available for a limited time.
So what about some meal ideas you say? Sure! Easy to prepare, affordable, and oh so tasty! Sounds like more N.E.A.T. recipes or meal ideas to me!
The first picture on left features a cold potato salad (bottom) that uses both shelled and peas in pod. Mix cooled cooked potatoes with fresh garden chives, and a good quality extra-virgin olive oil (like from Evoolution). Then add chopped red peppers, and fresh raw shelled peas and mix well. Chill.
The second picture features simple ingredients like (freshly home-made pasta ~ of course you can choose your own store bought) scallops mixed with peas in pod and garden market young green onions that have been lightly cooked on low to medium heat in EVOO. So scrumptious and easy!
For any of the two meal ideas you could add a green salad and switch out the meat choice (like chicken instead of the hormone-free sausage picture here on the left or on the right, having chicken instead of scallops).
You do need to know that peas contain purine which can for some who are susceptible, precipitate flare-ups of gout. (Other animal-based foods are typically more the culprits). For the most part this vegetable that is really part of the legume family, is safe for most people to consume. As always watch how you feel after you eat any food.
Now. Go get 'em while they're here!