While they freeze better than many vegetables, green peas are definitely at their best in the spring when they can be pulled straight from the pod. Fresh peas have a crisp texture and a bright, sweet flavor. And don't forget the pea tendrils: the thin, young shoots from the pea plant are crisp, earthy and especially good when sauteed.
The popularity of peas dates backs thousands of years. Originally found in the Middle East, peas are now popular across the globe in dishes such as Aloo Matar, an Indian dish of curried potatoes with peas, to the infamous British dish Mushy Peas. Even Thomas Jefferson knew how good peas were: he grew no less than thirty varieties on his Virginia estate.
When you're choosing your peas, remember this: Green peas know the benefits of a good snuggle. The best tasting pods will be vibrant green in color and full of peas with little empty space. Shake the peas gently. If you hear any rattling, try the next pod.
Pasta with Sweet Pea Pistou and Chèvre
Grouper with Peas and Saffron (Mero en Amarillo)
Chicken and Rice Salad with Mint Pesto and Peas
Herb Spätzle with Speck and Peas
Shaved Asparagus, Pea, and Prosciutto Salad
Scallops with Pea Puree and Vermouth Sauce
Double Pea Pasta with Salmon
Dry Cooked Cabbage with Tofu and Peas