Snow peas are a versatile and delicious vegetable that can be used in a variety of recipes, especially in Asian cuisine. They are crispy, crunchy, and refreshing, and offer a subtle sweetness to any dish. They are also low in calories and high in nutrients, making them a great addition to any healthy diet. However, prepping snow peas can be a bit of a challenge if you’re not familiar with the process. In this article, we’ll explore the different ways to prepare snow peas quickly and easily, so you can enjoy this tasty vegetable in your next wok-inspired meal.
What are Snow Peas?
Snow peas, also known as Chinese pea pods, are a type of edible-podded peas that are commonly used in Asian cuisine. They are flat, thin, and have a bright green color. Unlike other types of peas, snow peas have very small peas inside that are barely visible and are not usually eaten. Snow peas are usually harvested when the pods are still young and tender, which makes them a great addition to any stir-fry or salad.
Why You Should Add Snow Peas to Your Diet
Aside from their delicious taste, snow peas are also highly nutritious. They are an excellent source of vitamin C, which is important for maintaining a healthy immune system. They also contain vitamin K, which is essential for blood clotting and bone health, as well as vitamin A, which is good for your vision and skin. In addition, snow peas are low in calories, fat, and sodium, making them a great food for weight loss and maintaining a healthy diet.
How to Choose and Store Snow Peas
When choosing snow peas, look for pods that are firm, bright green, and free from blemishes or spots. Avoid pods that are yellow, flabby, or have visible signs of mold or mildew. You can also gently snap the stem end of the pod to see if it’s fresh; if it snaps easily, it’s fresh. If it bends or feels rubbery, it’s not fresh.
Snow peas can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. To keep them fresh, wrap them in a damp paper towel and store them in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge.
How to Prep Snow Peas
Prepping snow peas can be a bit tricky, but once you get the hang of it, it will be a breeze. Here are the different ways to prep snow peas:
Method 1: Trim the Ends
The simplest way to prep snow peas is to trim the ends. To do this, grab the tip of the pod with one hand and the stem with the other hand, and snap off the tip by bending the pod downwards until it snaps. Do the same thing for the other end. Make sure to use a sharp knife to remove any remaining stem if necessary.
Method 2: Remove the Strings
Sometimes, snow peas can have tough strings along the edges of the pod, which can be unpleasant to eat. To remove the strings, hold the pod with one hand and use the other hand to gently pull the string along the length of the pod. Repeat for the other edge of the pod.
Method 3: Butterfly Cut
The butterfly cut is a fancier way to prep snow peas, and it’s perfect for dishes that require the pea pods to be opened up. To butterfly cut the snow peas, start by trimming the ends and removing the strings. Then, hold the pod with one hand and use a sharp knife to cut along the back of the pod, without cutting all the way through. Open up the pod like a book, and you’ll have a beautiful butterfly-shaped snow pea.
How to Cook Snow Peas
Now that you know how to prep snow peas, it’s time to cook them. Snow peas are incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes, from stir-fries to salads. Here are some cooking methods to try:
Stir-frying is one of the most common ways to cook snow peas. Simply heat up a wok or a frying pan, add some oil, and stir-fry the snow peas with other vegetables, meat, and sauces of your choice. Make sure to cook them quickly over high heat, so they stay crunchy and retain their vibrant color.
Steaming snow peas is a great way to cook them if you want to retain their crunchiness and sweetness. Simply add some water to a pot, place a steamer basket on top, and add the snow peas to the basket. Cover the pot and steam for 3-4 minutes, or until they’re tender but still crisp.
Blanching snow peas is another way to cook them quickly and maintain their color and texture. Simply bring a pot of salted water to a boil, add the snow peas, and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until they’re bright green and tender. Drain the snow peas and immediately transfer them to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process.
Here is the nutrition information for 100 grams of snow peas:
|60 mg (100% DV)
|43.5 mcg (54% DV)
|31 mcg (3% DV)
Now that you know how to prep snow peas, you can easily include this tasty and nutritious vegetable in your meals. Whether you stir-fry them, steam them, or blanch them, snow peas are a great addition to any dish. Try experimenting with different flavors and seasonings to find your favorite recipe. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to remove the strings from snow peas?
It’s not necessary, but it’s recommended if the strings are tough and hard to chew. Removing the strings will make the snow peas more enjoyable to eat.
Can I eat the peas inside snow peas?
Yes, you can eat the peas inside snow peas, but they’re usually very small and not very flavorful. Most people prefer to just eat the pod.
How long do snow peas last in the fridge?
Snow peas can last up to a week in the fridge if stored properly. Make sure to wrap them in a damp paper towel and store them in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge.
How do I know if snow peas are fresh?
Fresh snow peas should be firm, bright green, and free from blemishes or spots. They should also snap easily when you bend them.
Healthline. (2021). Snow peas: Nutrition, benefits, and preparation. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/snow-peas
The Spruce Eats. (2021). How to prepare snow peas for cooking. Retrieved from https://www.thespruceeats.com/how-to-prepare-snow-peas-4065062