Friday, June 13, 2008

Sugar Snap Peas

We have eagerly awaited the first sugar snap pea harvest since the beginning of Spring! Sugar snap peas are so juicy, tender and sweet - we just love them!

These blossoms will each turn into a pea pod, and they do so relatively quickly.

sugar snap pea blossom

You can start harvesting these goodies when the peas have filled out enough to give the pod a nice "full" look. The pods should still be crisp and green, never limp, leathery or yellow. If you leave them on the vine too long, they will be bitter and too tough to eat. If you harvest them too early, the sugars will not be as sweet and the peas will be hard.

sugar snap peas ripening

If you harvest the peas regularly, the vines will produce a second and sometimes third crop. Each successive crop will be smaller than the previous. Sugar snap peas prefer cooler weather, so once the dog days of Summer arrive, the vines will become stunted. You might as well pull them up and replace them with green beans at that point. You can prolong the harvest by planting sugar snap peas in part shade in order to shelter them a bit from the hot afternoon sun, but at some point you will have to say goodbye to them until late Summer, when you can sow your second crop, about the same time you would sow your lettuce and spinach crop.

Sugar snap peas are eaten in the pod - you don't shell the peas. For this meal, we gave them a quick boil - maybe for three minutes - then poured a honey reduction over them. Alternatively, you could pour a little melted butter on them or just salt them a bit. They are sweet and refreshing and make a great accompaniment to any meal.

first sugar snap pea dinner of 2008

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At 8:41 PM , Blogger Magnolia Sun said...

They look so good and so green.

At 10:48 PM , Blogger Tami said...

This meal looks good :)

At 4:05 PM , Blogger Pam said...

yum..i love them.


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