PRESERVE THE HARVEST SERIES
Preserve the Harvest Series presents a new fruit or vegetable every Tuesday with the goal of helping you get the most out of fresh fruits and vegetables harvested during peak season. Whether you grow your own fruits and vegetables, buy them at the Farmer’s Market or your local grocery store, it is good to remember the best time to preserve your bounty is when it is plentiful. Preserving the harvest stocks your pantry shelves and freezer with whole foods that you can feel good about, foods that taste great, and this approach saves you money. A sane approach to sustainability! Next up…How to Freeze Snap Peas.
Lets’s Talk Snap Peas
Peas are usually planted in early spring or late summer. They are a delicate, cool weather crop that does not tolerate the heat very well. As temperatures soar, pea stalks begin to dry out and stop flowering. To increase productivity for as long as possible, it is best to plant your peas where they will get some relief from the summer sun. Peas come in three basic varieties; Snap peas (an edible pod with full-sized peas), Snow peas (edible flat pod with small undeveloped peas), Sweet peas (fully developed peas with inedible pod). Be sure to mark your peas if you are planting different varieties, as they all look the same when first starting out. Harvest your peas, like most all other vegetables early in the morning before the heat of the day for best flavor. My favorite of all three varieties is the Sugar Snap Pea. The edible pods snap with crispness when bitten into and the sweet garden flavor is hard to beat. The season is never quite long enough, so I have taken to planting in abundance and freezing these sugary snacks to enjoy for later.
How to Freeze Snap Peas
Harvest your Snap Peas early in the morning and be prepared to freeze the bounty on the day they are picked. Wilted, old pea pods lose their crunch and do not make a good candidate for freezing.
- Rinse your peas, pinch off the ends and remove strings from the seams of the pod.
- Add 4 quarts water to a large pot and bring to a boil.
- While water is heating, prepare ice bath for Snap Peas. Fill sink with ice and add cold water. It is important to plunge Snap Peas into ice bath after allotted steam time to stop the cooking process.
- Once water has come to a boil, add about 3 cups Snap Peas to the boiling water and immediately set timer for 2 minutes. Once timer goes off, drain peas into a colander and plunge into ice water for 2 minutes.
- Remove Snap Peas from ice water and drain. Gently pat dry peas with paper towels.
- Place Snap Peas on flat baking sheets lined with parchment or wax paper, careful to keep Snap Peas from touching. Place in the coldest part of freezer until frozen solid. (about 1 hour). Once frozen, remove Snap Peas from freezer, place into heavy duty freezer bags or vacuum seal, as desired. Date and label. Will keep for up to 1 year.
Preserve The Harvest Series: How to Freeze Snap Peas shared with:
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