Super Food: Green Peas

I’m growing my first garden this year, and let me tell you for a first garden it is huge, 30 feet by 30 feet! (Go big or go home, right?)  Way too much food for two people, but I suspect it won’t be too hard giving fresh garden food away.  Anyways, I was most excited about growing…. PEAS! My love of peas began at a very early age, my grandmothers and aunts all had them in growing in their gardens. Now it’s my turn – 4 rows, yes please!

The green pea, which began its journey as a field pea, is thought to have originated in central Asia and Middle East regions.  For the longest time peas were eaten in their dry form, it wasn’t until updated cultivation methods were implemented (16th century) that they realized just how awesome they taste fresh. They are known scientifically as Pisum sativum, and have three main varieties: garden peas, snow peas and snap peas. Which one is your favorite?

 

Why is it healthy?

Not only are green peas delicious, they are nutritious! Here is what you can expect from these little guys:

  • High in fibre
  • High in protein, about twice the amount of protein found in most veggies.
  • High in folate, this is the B vitamin that helps make red blood cells as well as preventing neural tube defects.
  • High in vitamin C, this helps keep our immune system healthy.
  • Low calorie and fat free
  • Decent amount of calcium (helps with muscle contractions), iron (helps carry oxygen all over our bodies)  and vitamin A (promotes a healthy defense system: skin, stomach, intestines, and respiratory tracts)

 

Including green pea in your diet:

You can buy peas fresh, frozen or canned. I’d go for the frozen vs. canned as they taste better and have no sodium (make sure to check the label).

Include them in a variety of dishes: soups, strews, stir fry, casseroles, pasta, salads, as side dish, or just eaten raw.

*In this month’s newsletter, we’re sharing a recipe for Orange Scented Peas* Yum!

 

Did you know that…

Canada is the largest producer and exporter of peas. We grow over 3 million tons per year!

Peas are one of the only members of the legume family that can be eaten fresh.