In Season Now Pea Shoots and Pasta

Published on May 17th, 2010 | by Rachel Shulman

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Top Ten Pea Shoot Recipes (in season now!)

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Pea Shoots and Pasta

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Like most green leafy vegetables, pea shoots – the young tendrils and leaves of the garden pea plant – are incredibly nutrient-dense. You can start looking for them at farmers markets or Asian markets in the spring and early summer.

Two cups of raw pea shoots have 10 calories, zero fat, 35.5% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C, 15% of vitamin A, 8.75% of vitamin E, 132% of vitamin K, 10.5% of folate, 5.75% of thiamine, 7% of riboflavin, and 4.75% of vitamin B-6. They’re also chock-full of phytonutrients and antioxidants.

Here are my top ten vegetarian and vegan pea shoot recipes:

1. Pea Shoot Salad with Soy Vinaigrette

For the soy vinaigrette, blend 1/2 cup of grapeseed oil, 1 teaspoon of dark sesame oil, 3 tablespoons of unseasoned rice wine vinegar, and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce.

2. Pea Shoot Salad with Coconut Curry Vinaigrette and Toasted Sea Vegetables

For the coconut curry vinaigrette, blend 1/2 cup of coconut milk, 3 tablespoons of rice vinegar, and 2 teaspoons of curry powder. Sprinkle your salad with crumbled, lightly toasted nori, to taste.

3. Vietnamese-Style Stir-Fried Vegetables

  • 1/4 cup of canola oil
  • 1 cup of broccoli florets
  • 2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup of snow or snap peas, trimmed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 dried Thai chilies or hot red pepper flakes to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of Thai fish sauce or soy sauce
  • 2 cups of pea shoots
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over high heat. Cook the broccoli for about a minute. Add 2 tablespoons of water and stir fry until the broccoli is crisp-tender (about 5 minutes). Remove from the pan and repeat with the carrots and snow peas.

Put a bit more oil in the pan and add the onion. Cook over high heat for 3-5 minutes, until the onion is softened. Add the chiles and garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds).

Add 1/4 cup of water, the fish sauce, and the pepper. Add the cooked vegetables back to the pan. Stir the mixture and cook until combined (about 1 minute). Add the pea shoots and stir fry until just wilted and lightly sauced (30 seconds to a minute, depending on how delicate your pea shoots are). Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve hot with rice and sriracha chili sauce, if you’d like.

4. Asparagus, Fava Bean & Pea Shoot Salad

5. Ginger-Glazed Grilled Carrot and Pea Shoot Salad

6. Baby Artichoke and Pea Shoot Salad

7. Pea Shoots with Fermented Bean Curd

8. Sautéed Snow Peas, Sugar Snap Peas, and Pea Shoots

9. Soba Noodles with Pea Shoots, Shiitake Mushrooms, and Leeks

10. Stir-Fried Pea Shoots

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Image courtesy of cygnoir via a Creative Commons license.


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About the Author

I'm an ecologist turned journalist turned farmer-in-training. I'm currently working on an organic farm and creamery in Illinois. Follow me on twitter (http://twitter.com/rachelshulman), friend me on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=3105709), or follow me on StumbleUpon (http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/RachelShulman/).



9 Responses to Top Ten Pea Shoot Recipes (in season now!)

  1. Adrianne says:

    Is there any reason not to eat the leafy greens of the mature pea plant. We’re harvesting wonderful peas, but the leaves look great too.

    • Rachel Shulman says:

      All parts of the pea plant are edible, but pea leaves and stems taste better when they’re young. As they mature, they become tough and stringy.

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  8. Man, I wish I’d seen this before going to the grocery store! That coconut vinaigrette sounds amazing.

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