Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The peas are coming! The peas are coming!

So, it's that time of year again, time for snow peas and clichés like "it's that time of year again."And I don't just mean a few snow peas. I'm talking about 2 hundred-foot rows of snow peas. I picked nearly a full 5 gallon bucket of the little suckers last week and then was informed that the second row was getting tilled up. The peas had shared the bed with radishes and 2 foot tall thistles, and they just weren't doing as well as the other row. So, I had the pleasure of pulling up the entire row and picking all of the peas off. Luckily for me this row wasn't doing as well, otherwise I would have had more peas than I knew what to do with.

It took me several hours to get these bad boys cleaned up and packed away in the freezer all by myself, but it'll be worth it when the school year rolls around and I have lots of yummy organic peas to eat.

The first thing you have to do is get them nice and clean. I dumped them all in my sink and ran the sink full of cold water. On my counter I set out my cutting board and a small paring knife with some large bowls to the left of the cutting board. I gave the peas a little scrub and placed them on the counter on the opposite side of the cutting board from where I'd be sitting. You might want to lay down some towels, otherwise you'll get a good puddle going (I just mopped it up after I was done). Once I got a good pile I sat at my cutting board and started trimming the ends off and tossing the pea pods in the bowls. After you master this fine art, you'll find that you can cut the ends off of two or three peas at a time. And remember, this is for sugar snap or snow peas only! The pods on other peas aren't edible, so you'll have to shell them.

When you've got all of your peas trimmed up get a big pot of water boiling on the stove. You'll need to blanch the pea pods for 2-3 minutes. A blanching basket would be nice, but I'm poor so I just removed the peas from the boiling water with a slotted spoon and plunged them into a sink full of ice cold water. This stops the cooking process.

After they're good and cool, just let them drain. I usually put a colander inside a large bowl and let the peas sit inside there for a while. From there, pack them into gallon freezer bags and load them into the freezer. I have five bags full and they're taking up most of my freezer and a portion of the community freezer in the res hall. Oh well, it's summer so nobody else is here.

If you find any good recipes, send them my way. I usually make soups or stir-fry with mine. This mint and pea soup is looking really good, but I'd have to substitute for the dairy.

(Have you noticed that I've been using a bunch of Flickr photos? My camera finally died after surviving several years of my abuse, including all of those backpacking trips. R.I.P.)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...