The (Pisum sativum} is a frost-hardy, cool season vegetable that grows on a climbing plant which produces pods containing seeds {the peas!}. There are two main types of peas; those eaten with the pod (sugar snap or snow peas) or those that must be removed from the inedible pod before eating (shell peas}. Peas have been an important staple for thousands of years; the oldest evidence of peas was found in a cave in Burma and dated to about 9750 years ago.

Preparation: Wash peas lust before preparing. String sugar peas by snapping off each end and pulling the string from each side of the pod. For shell peas, string and then pull each half of the pod apart to pop out the peas. Steam, sauté or stir-fry quickly to retain the bright green color and vitamin content; Vitamin C is easily destroyed by over cooking. Generally, the smaller the pods the more tender.