The Mighty Pea

This protein packed legume should be part of your meal medley. Peas are good source of protein and they are packed with fiber, vitamins, and iron. You can eat all parts of the plant. Pea greens liven up any salad. Certain varieties have edible pods. Of course the main attraction is the pea itself. Raw or cooked you can't go wrong. Let's check out some ways to prepare these little green gems.


GARDEN PEAS

This is a quick side dish for any meal.



2 lb Snap Peas

1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter (Kerrygold is a good grass-fed brand)

2 cloves Garlic

2 tsp fresh Rosemary, dried

1 tsp Salt

1 tsp Black Pepper

Bring a large soup pot to a full boil.

While the water is coming to a boil, clean peas, and remove the ends.

Place peas into boil water for 3 minutes.

Heat butter in a skillet.

Drain peas, and place into the skillet.

Press two cloves of garlic over peas, and add the rosemary.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and sauté until peas are tender.


https://www.primalpalate.com/paleo-blog/garden-peas/


SPRING PEA SALAD


I love peas in a salad. They are the star of the show in this recipe.





For the Salad:


2 cups fresh snow peas

2 cups peas (frozen or fresh )

1 cup micro baby pea shoots

2 1/2 cups arugula leaves

2 1/2 cups fresh spinach leaves (or spring mix lettuce)

¼ cup sweet onion, thinly sliced

4 radishes thinly sliced

freshly ground black pepper to taste

Salmon or steak for topping, if desired

For the dressing:


1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt

1/2 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon dijon mustard

1-2 teaspoons stevia or lakanto

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

2 lemons zest and juice

2 teaspoons kosher salt

Blanch the snow peas and green peas in boiling water for 1-2 minutes, until they turn bright green. Drain and rinse with ice cold water.

Add peas to a large bowl. Add baby pea shoots, arugula, spinach, onion and radishes and refrigerate until ready to serve.

For the dressing, add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. This can be made days in advance.

Pour dressing over salad and toss gently to combine. We love this as a side salad, or as a main dish topped with salmon or steak! Delicious!

https://tastesbetterfromscratch.com/spring-pea-salad/


SPRING PEA SALAD


The flavors explode in this salad. Grab some goat cheese and try it tonight.




1⁄2 cup fresh mint leaves, torn

1 tablespoon capers, roughly chopped

1 small shallot, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated

1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1⁄8 teaspoon kosher salt

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

1lb green peas, blanched if fresh, thawed if frozen

1⁄2 cup goat cheese, crumbled

In a medium bowl, combine the mint, capers, shallot, zest, oil, salt, and pepper.

Add the peas and goat cheese and toss gently.

Serve at room temperature.

https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/real-simples-spring-pea-salad-169033



VEGGIE PEA SOUP


Pea soup will warm you up on a cold winter's night. This version is packed with nutrition with the addition of cauliflower and parsnips.





2 medium leeks

1 onion

1 head of cauliflower

1 lb parsnips

10 cups bone broth

1 tsp salt (depending on saltiness of broth used)

1 tsp dried oregano leaves

1 tsp dried dill

1/2 tsp garlic powder

5 cups arugula

13.5 oz coconut milk


PREP: Cut the leeks in half through their stems, lengthwise. Rinse them free of any soil or sand trapped in between the layers, then chop both the green and white parts roughly. Dice the onion and cut the cauliflower into bite size pieces. Peel and trim the parsnips, then slice them finely. If the parsnips are especially thick, cut them in half lengthwise before slicing.

SIMMER: Add the chopped vegetables to a 6 qt dutch oven or similarly sized pan. Pour over the bone broth and add the salt, oregano, dill and garlic powder, then bring the broth to a simmer. Cook at an even simmer until the vegetables are fork tender, about 30 minutes. Add the arugula a little at a time until it is just wilted, then remove the dutch oven from the heat.

BLEND: Add the coconut milk to the dutch oven, then use an immersion blender to gradually blend everything together until smooth. For a super smooth soup as pictured, let the soup cool a little and carefully transfer the soup in batches to a high powered blender instead of using an immersion blender. Be careful to leave plenty of room in the blender and to leave a way for steam to escape when blending hot soup!

https://meatified.com/paleo-pea-soup-aip-whole30/


SLOW COOKER SPLIT PEA SOUP


Here is a classic. The beauty of the slow cooker is to let it do the work for you. You'll love this soup that is ready when you get home.





16 oz dried split peas (about 2 cups)

1 1/2 lb ham bone

3 carrots, diced

1 yellow onion, diced

1 shallot, diced

2 stalks celery, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp dried thyme

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1 bay leaf

6 cups low sodium chicken stock

In the bowl of a slow cooker, combine the split peas, carrots, yellow onion, shallot, celery, garlic, thyme, pepper, bay leaf, and chicken stock. Mix well.

Add the ham bone on top and nestle into the contents of the slow cooker.

Cover and cook on Low for 5-6 hours, or until ham is tender and easily pulls off the bone.

Remove the ham and shred into bite-size pieces using two forks, then return the ham meat to the slow cooker, and discard the bone.

Remove the bay leaf and serve.


https://www.asweetpeachef.com/slow-cooker-split-pea-soup


OTHER WAYS TO ENJOY PEAS

Plant your own peas. This is a perfect patio plant. You can enjoy the greens before the pods form. You won't believe how strong the flavor is in a tiny little leaf.

Once those plants mature, enjoy raw peas. Most years, I eat the raw peas and we don't have enough to cook!

Add them to your omelet, egg muffins, or scrambles

Keep a frozen bag in the freezer to add to green salads, chicken salad, egg salad, tuna salad, etc.

Dry peas for a crunchy snack

Add to stews and soups

Add to cauliflower rice for rice pilaf

Add smashed peas to guacamole for a protein enhancement

Make pea hummus

Pea milk (super creamy - and doesn't taste like peas)

Pea protein - good plant protein base for smoothies, sauces, soups, and stews


The mighty pea is available year round. There are many ways to enjoy them as you can see. What recipe will you try first?


Here's to your health! Happy Cooking!

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