Sugar snap peas

eary spring

Really? You didn’t eat these the minute you took them out of the box? Well, the good news is sugar snaps just need a rinse. These really deserve to be eaten right away. They will keep for a week or so in the refrigerator, but peas this fresh should be enjoyed as close to harvest as possible. Sugar snaps were the creation of Calvin Lamborn, a plant breeder and virologist, who spent many years in the process of breeding them. He was introduced to a pea with a thick walled pod and crossed it with a snow pea, hoping to solve some problems with snow pea production. The result instead was what we now call the sugar snap, awarded a gold medal by the All-America Selections in 1979. His pea was such a sensation that he was featured in the April 16, 1979 issue of People magazine. The author Tim Woodward wrote, “Now, thanks to Lamborn, who became a practicing botanist, there’s something new under the harvest sun: sugar snap peas, which can be eaten—raw or cooked—pod and all. Further, Lamborn’s variety is fatter and sweeter than the snow pea and yields up to three times the crop of the common pea. To gourmet James Beard, sugar snaps are ‘nothing short of sensational…a breakthrough for all of us who love crispy, crunchy vegetables.’” You can just sit down and eat your box of sugar snaps, and I recommend that you consume at least some of them this way since they’re going to beat, hands down, any sugar snap you buy at a grocery store. Store them? No. Just eat them, refrigerate what you don’t eat, and then finish them tomorrow.