Facts which will make you say “PLEASE PEAS”

Description
The green pea is essentially a vegetable, even though it is a fruit biologically. It is grown in the winter season in cool climates. However, with the advancements in technology, it is grown in all places in present times. The pea lies inside the shell, and has to be taken out after bursting the outside protective covering. The peas are generally spherical shaped. It is the pod of the leguminous plant Pisum sativum.

Each of the pods contains a number of peas. Generally, the peas are first steam boiled before the peas are extracted, so that it tastes much sweeter, and also the nutrients have more effect on our body.

Archaeologists have revealed numerous assortments of peas worldwide.  Undeveloped sorts of peas are known as shell peas, green peas, or garden peas. Developed peas grow in diverse geographic regions but are more widespread in Britain. A few of the most aged sorts of pears are well-liked all through Japan. As peas develop, they undergo the drying procedure in nature while being at the vine at the field, and are known as marrowfat peas. The sweet types of pod peas are called mangetout as well as sugar. Peas that grow in the southern regions of USA are called cowpeas/ English peas.

Buying tips
When you go to the market to buy the peas, make sure that the pods are strong and fat, not water soaked and wilting. There should be no mildew residue. The skin should be smooth as velvet, with no bumps or indentations. Also, you should check that there are no stains or spots on the skin. Also, the color should be in the lighter shades of green. You should avoid those which are dark green or which are turning yellow. Always buy those peas which are in the refrigerated sections of the market, and not those which are exposed to heat. This is because heat results in the sugar content of peas getting converted to starch.

Culinary Usage
Green peas/ shell peas/garden peas are used widely in many different recipes. It forms a very tasty addition to many vegetable preparations. These peas have to be extracted from inside the pods before being cooked.

The peas can be prepared for cooking in a number of different ways. They can be blanched by boiling them and then immediately plunging them into cold water. These peas are widely used in different recipes, generally with a combination of garlic and sesame oil. You can also just boil the peas and use it.

Sometimes it is made into a peas puree. This has to be made by fresh peas, just taken from the garden. Fresh mint is added to it, and then crushed to make a paste. It serves as a wonderful dip for fish, especially mackerel.

Peas can also be parboiled, or used as a whole. Some other culinary usages are:

  1. Often, the fresh peas are boiled and served after smearing them with butter and adding pepper. This is a really tasty side dish. It can also be used to make salads.
  2. Green peas, also known as shell peas and garden peas, are widely used in India in many vegetable preparations. One of the most common one is “aloo matar, which is basically a preparation made with potatoes and peas. It can be found in the menus of almost all the restaurants in India. Other common cuisines include “paneer matar” – a preparation made with cheese and peas. These peas can be either fresh from the market or frozen.
  3. The peas can also be eaten raw for a tasty and crunchy treat. They are extremely sweet in taste when fresh.
  4. Sometimes, the peas are fried or roasted. This is also a very popular snack.
  5. Peas are used extensively in soups. They can be either vegetable soups like sweet corn soups, or even chicken soups.
  6. In Chinese cuisine, the pea sprouts are fried deeply and consumed.
  7. Peas complement diced onions. This unique combination is used popularly to make chicken salads, along with almonds.

Storage
If you have bought fresh peas from the market, you should have it as quickly as possible. Refrigerating them keeps them fresh, but only for a week at most. It is better to have it as soon as possible, to have a tasty and healthy meal. The sugar in the peas starts changing into starch in a few hours. Thus, you should have it as soon as possible. Keep the peas inside a plastic bag or a sealed container and then keep it in the crispier drawer of your refrigerator.

If you have not washed or opened the peas, then they can be refrigerated for a longer period of time. You can also blanch the peas quickly before storing them, to keep it fresh for an extended period of time.

Medicinal benefits
Green peas have a large number of medicinal benefits in contrast to its small size. Some of them are:

  1. Green peas have a rich content of protein and dietary fiber. The fiber is insoluble. Insoluble fiber aids in reducing serum cholesterol in your body. This in turn reduces the chances of strokes or other cardiovascular diseases. It helps in curing chronic heart diseases.
  2. It is rich in iron, which is vital for your blood cells and the proper functioning of your body. It also contains other vital minerals like potassium and magnesium.
  3. It is an extremely effective anti-oxidant. It has a large number of anti-inflammatory nutrients as well. This helps in curing many diseases like type 2 diabetes and other chronic heart problems.
  4. It aids largely in normalizing your level of blood sugar. The high content of insoluble fiber and proteins help in regulating the speed of your digestion. This includes regulating the pace at which sugar is broken down into starch inside your body, which is responsible for its blood sugar regulating attribute.
  5. Research has conclusively proven that green peas help to protects against cancer, especially stomach cancers.

Where to buy green peas in US?
Canada is the largest exporter of peas. In USA, peas are imported and exported in large volumes. It is grown in many states. It was initially grown in Washington and Idaho in the Palouse region. It is now grown in North Dakota, Montana, Minnesota and South Dakota.

Nutritional and dietary information
Green peas, which are also called shell peas and garden peas have the following nutrients:

  1. Vitamins including Vitamin A, Vitamin B2, Vitamin C and Vitamin K.
  2. Minerals like Iron, Magnesium, Potassium and Manganese.
  3. Proteins and dietary fibers.
  4. Carbohydrates.

After reading the above article, you must be amazed by the high nutritional profile of this vegetable. It also takes care of your body by its large number of medicinal benefits.

Nutrition Facts
Servings Size 1 cup (120gm)
Total Fat 1%
Saturated Fat 1%
Potassium 13%
Total Carbohydrate 11%
Vitamin A 4%
Vitamin C 21%
Calcium 4%
Iron 15%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because it has not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

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