Snow Peas, leaves, tendrils and flowers
Note the pea growing from the flower (bottom, center left)
Snow peas and sugar snap peas are members of the Pisum sativum Leguminosae Family. They are edible-podded peas also known as snap peas, sugar peas and Chinese peas. The pod of snow peas are flat, sugar snap peas are rounded (see photo at end of post). Click here for Cornell University peas growing guide.
Growing: Snow peas/sugar snap peas grow best during spring and early summer when temperatures are between 60ºF to 75ºF. Sow seeds (in well drained soil high in organic matter) in spring (late March early April) as soon as soil is workable. I find if I wait until the soil is around 60ºF to sow, the seeds germinate faster. For extended harvest plant varieties with different maturity dates or practice successive planting. Tall vining varieties require trellissing. Follow package directions for planting depth and spacing.
Harvesting: Some people like to harvest when the peas are barely showing (photo top of post), I like to harvest when there is more swelling (photo at end of post).
Cooking: Snow peas and sugar snap peas are interchagable in recipes. They are at their tastiest immediately after harvest. A very versatile vegetable, can be eaten cooked or uncooked.
Cooked – Alone or mixed with other vegetables for a side. Add to meat, seafood, tofu or poultry in a stir-fry as a main course
Uncooked – Add to salad, as part of a crudité platter …….
Snow Peas, Radish & Chinese (Garlic) Chives Flowers Stir-fry
Ingredients (see NOTE)
Snow peas, remove stem ends and stringed
Red radishes, thinly sliced
Chinese (garlic) chives flowers, cut into about 1″ – 2″ lengths
1 – 2 slices ginger, fresh or from ginger wine
1 – 2 tablespoons ginger wine or as needed
Kosher salt to taste
1 – 3 teaspoons oil
1 – 3 teaspoons Asian sesame oil, optional
1 – 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds for garnish, optional
1. Add oil to preheated wok or frying pan. Add ginger, stir fry a few seconds to flavor oil.
2. Add salt, snow peas, radishes and chives flowers. Stir fry until snow peas turn bright green, add wine, stir fry until wine is absorbed amd veggies reached desired doneness.
3. Stir in sesame oil, if using. Remove to serving platter, garnish with toasted sesame seeds, if desired. Serve hot or at room temp.
NOTE: This is one of those recipes (no specific quantities given, just use it as a guide) where you do your own thing, add as much or as few of what you like or is available.
Substitute: sugar snap peas for the snow peas
Substitute: soy sauce or oyster sauce for the salt, add same time as wine
Substitute: garlic scapes for the Chinese chive flowers
Snow Peas (top), Sugar Snap (bottom)
Copyright © by Norma Chang
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