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Sugar Snap Peas

Crisp, plump, sweet sugar snap peas are one of the best refreshing treats that spring has to offer. Enjoy raw as a snack, chopped into salads, or stir-fried in savory dishes.

Flavor profile: Sweet, earthy, pea flavor

Uses: Sugar Snap Peas are excellent raw or slightly blanched as a snack on their own, served with dip, or tossed into salads. Slightly stir-fried with tamari or soy sauce, sugar snap peas become an incredible savory side dish served alongside rice, eggs, pork, etc. Pea greens and shoots are also a delicious, delicate green with a rich, mild pea flavor.

Storage: Sugar snap peas will keep their crunch best when stored in a mostly airtight container or bag that keeps moisture in. If you buy your peas in a pint, transfer to a tupperware to store in the fridge for the week, if you don’t eat them immediately that is!

Similar Crops: Sugar Snap Peas stand apart from their other pea cousins for their plump tender texture and high sugar content. Shelling peas are known for having tougher, less edible pods and bigger peas inside. Snow peas are known for having very tiny peas and flat tender pods that are great for stir-fries.

Nutrients: Peas are a legume, a member of the bean family which are high in protein, making sugar snap peas a filling and nutritious snack or side. They are also high in Vitamin C, iron, Vitamin K, dietary fiber, and more.

History: Peas, beans, and lentils are all legumes that have been grown all around the world for a very long time, their young tender pods enjoyed both raw and cooked, and their seeds dried and saved for winter meals. Snap peas have been bred for sweeter flavor and more tender, less stringy pods for centuries, getting more and more palatable over the years. But it wasn’t until 1979 that plant breeder, Calvin Lamborn, in the midwestern United States began to hone in on the sugar snap that we all know and love. These days everyone tends to have their favorite pea variety, which now range from greens to purples to speckled pinks.

Why it's a great crop: After a long winter, peas are one of the first crisp sweet treats that we have to enjoy before other early summer goods like strawberries and cucumbers come on. Farmers are usually chomping at the bit to seed their peas sometimes as early as November to have sugar snaps available earlier and earlier, a risk that will pan out some years and be thwarted by hard frosts during others. 

In the home garden, seeding peas is the one of the first garden tasks that marks a joyful beginning of spring. Their beautiful delicate vines are full of little tendrils that twirl around anything they can to hold themselves up. And each little precious papilionaceous (butterfly-shaped) flower, ranging from white to purple to pink and blue, will become its own pea right before your eyes.

Read More:

Garlic Snap Peas with Ramen

Garlic Snap Peas with Ramen

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