Peas on Earth

They bring good nutrition to all.




For some, the mention of peas may conjure memories of boiled, buttery green mush or an accessory to a canned soup– based casserole. But if you can look past the culinary atrocities of yore, you’ll discover that there’s flavor and crispy, crunchy freshness to be found in these green legumes, the harvest of which marks the start of New Jersey’s summer. Three varieties most commonly grown here are garden (also called English or sweet) peas, snow (or sugar) peas and snap peas, according to the state’s Department of Agriculture. All three are available from mid-May to early July.

POWER UP

The different varieties vary in nutritional content, mainly because snow and snap peas are eaten whole, while garden peas are shelled. The pod has less nutritional content than the pea, so garden peas are richer in vitamins and minerals. A .-cup serving of garden peas has about 60 calories, four grams of protein and four grams of fiber. It also delivers 29 milligrams (33 percent of the recommended daily value, or DV) of immune-boosting vitamin C and 18 mg (22 percent DV) of vitamin K, which benefits the blood. It’s rich in B vitamins thiamin (2 mg or 13 percent DV) and folate (47 micrograms or 12 percent DV), both of which are good for heart health, and niacin (1.5 mg or 7.5 percent DV), which helps the body convert food to energy.

The same serving of podded peas (½ cup equals about 10 pods) has only 13 calories but fewer benefits: 1 gram of protein, 1 gram of fat and less than 10 mg of vitamins C and K.

BUY/STORE/SERVE

Many New Jersey farms allow visitors to pick their own peas, but for those on the go, all three varieties are sold at farm stands and grocery stores. Look for bright, crisp pods with no browning or wilting. Store them unshelled—peas should be refrigerated in a perforated plastic bag, according to Jersey Fresh, a state promotional and quality grading program. If you don’t plan to use them within three to five days, peas can be frozen.

When preparing, simply break off the end and drag the string-like attachment across the top for an “unzip” effect. Snow and snap peas can be consumed at this point. When working with the garden variety, pry open the pod, revealing a line of peas inside. Discard the pod and prepare.

Peas have a delicate, fresh flavor, so they are best celebrated through simplicity. Resist the urge to boil and butter them—instead, cook them to a gentle al dente and toss them with fresh herbs, such as mint, marjoram or rosemary. Serve them raw or steamed in a salad, mix them into a spring risotto or, for a little indulgence, roast them with bacon or pancetta.

DID YOU KNOW?

Your seventh-grade science teacher has peas to thank for her lesson plans. In the mid-19th century, Austrian-Czech researcher Gregor Johann Mendel experimented with growing garden peas to discover how humans inherit certain traits through recessive and dominant genes.

—Liz Donovan

PEAS DE RÉSISTANCE? Literature’s most celebrated pea may be the one in a tale by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen, placed under 20 mattresses to test the snoozing sensitivity of a young woman who claimed to be a princess. Her morning complaint of a lump in her bed confirmed her royalty.

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Join us for a celebration of over 10,000 wishes granted for children in New Jersey, while raising funds to support the wishes taking place this Fall! Help share the power of a wish by walking and...

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In the Spirit of the 2009 best seller "Girls Like Us" by Sheila Weller, Gerard and Diane Barros salute three of the groundbreaking women of the 60s and 70s pop who are the subject of this...

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The Eighth Annual AIR Express Golf Outing Honors Dr. Lauren Koniaris, M.D. for her service to Hackensack University Medical Center. Golf Outing tickets are $550 each or $240 for dinner only...

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Join us for partially guided meditations every Monday afternoon from 1:10-1:45pm. Learn to mediate or expand your current practice. Come experience the benefits of meditation and...

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Guest Speaker: Chris Germer 7-8:30 lecture and 6:30pm book signing Burgeoning research demonstrates that self-compassion is strongly associated with emotional wellbeing; reduced stress,...

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Four course Single Malt Scotch Dinner With Specialty Cocktail featuring the Single Malt Scotches from The Balvenie Tuesday, Spetember 24th 6:30pm $135 per person (Plus Tax & Gratuity)...

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Where:
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Join us for partially guided meditations on Wednesday evenings. Learn to mediate or expand your current practice. Come experience the benefits of meditation and practice in community....

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The Metropolitan is arguably the highlight of a trip to NYC. From a restored Roman villa to an Egyptian Temple to masterpieces by artists from ancient times to the present day, it is an...

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For details and registration on the 8 week sessions visit ywcannj.org/adult-fitness-classes.

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Where:
Ridgewood christian Reformed Church
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Come join us for one or more of our FREE guided walks through the convenient and picturesque Bergen County's Parks. A great opportunity to enjoy the outdoors, socialize and make new friends....

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Join Komen North Jersey for an afternoon of celebrating survivors, and networking with passionate business leaders and advocates in the fight against breast cancer. The afternoon includes lunch...

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Mayfair Farms
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Join us for partially guided meditations every Monday afternoon from 1:10-1:45pm. Learn to mediate or expand your current practice. Come experience the benefits of meditation and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Ramapo College of New Jersey
505 Ramapo Valley Road
Mahwah, NJ  07430
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Sponsor: Krame Center
Telephone: 201-684-6855
Contact Name: Vijosa Hoxha
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For details and registration on the 8 week sessions visit ywcannj.org/adult-fitness-classes.

Cost: $50 for annual membership

Where:
Ridgewood christian Reformed Church
271 Lincoln Ave
Ridgewood, NJ  07451
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Sponsor: YWCA bergen county
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Cost: free

Where:
Pascack Brook County Park
Emerson Avenue Westwood
Westwood, NJ  07675
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Sponsor: YWCA bergen county
Telephone: 201-345-1912
Contact Name: Marge Distefano
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For details and registration on the 8 week sessions visit ywcannj.org/adult-fitness-classes.

Cost: $50 for annual membership

Where:
Ridgewood christian Reformed Church
271 Lincoln Ave
Ridgewood, NJ  07451
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Overpeck Park
199 Challenger Rd
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Live Music, German Food & Beer, Dance, Games, Competitions, and more. Fundraising in support of the Center For Food Action's Weekend Snack Pack Program. $15.00 at the Door $10.00 in...

Cost: $15 Door, $10 Advance

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American Legion Hall
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For details and registration on the 8 week sessions visit ywcannj.org/adult-fitness-classes.

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Ridgewood, NJ  07451
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Sponsor: YWCA bergen county
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