You may have seen that we brought the very first peas of the season to market this weekend. There is nothing like the first, fresh, juicy, delicate pea of the season! But all this goodness is time sensitive. Don’t bring your peas home and hoard them for a later date. Pea hoarding is not cool and it makes for less tasty veggies.
Veggies are living things and their cells build and grow through the conversions of sugars into energy, just like we do. When they’re attached to the full plant, their system of photosynthesis is intact. Plants take the glucose that is produced in photosynthesis and use it in respiration to supply energy to the plant cells. But enough science class for one day, we’ll let Bill Nye the Science Guy take it from here if you want to delve a little deeper into the whole photosynthesis process.
Once a veggie is harvested, however, everything changes. It immediately begins to turn those sugars into starches because once they’re no longer connected to the plant, they can no longer renew their food and energy supplies. Any kind of heat (like sitting in the sun on a market table) speeds up this sugar loss.
All veggies eventually go through this after being harvested: carrots go limp, beans flop and greens shrivel. However, the veggies that have the most precious window of flavourful ripeness are peas, corn and beans. In fact, corn can lose up to 25% of it’s total sugars in just 24hr if not properly preserved or enjoyed! Storing harvested veggies in a cool space slows down this sugar loss process, but doesn’t stop it.
This is why we’re up at zero o’clock on CSA days to pick you the freshest corn available. Go ahead, try that corn from Mexico or USA or even out of town and compare it to your CSA corn. No contest.
*Teaser, we’re still a couple months away from fresh corn*
So we encourage you to go on a veggie bender when you’ve got those fresh veggies in the fridge. Seize the day, destroy that bag of peas, it’s no match for you. You’re going to enjoy it to the last pod. And guess what, it’s even going to be amazing for your body. You’ll thank yourself.
Pea are powerhouses…
- Rich in vitamin K1, folic acid & vitamin B6
- A great source of good carbs and a significant source of cancer fighting flavonoids and antioxidant rich vitamin C
- 100 calorie serving of shelled peas (about 3/4 cup) contains more protein than a whole egg or a Tbsp of peanut butter
- And if you want to impress your friends, you can let them know that snow peas are lower in protein than sweet garden peas but provide more iron and twice the calcium!