Tender, beautiful pea shoots are one of my favorite fresh-from-the-garden treats.
Those curly green tendrils are the leaves of the traditional garden pea plant. They hold all the flavor of a freshly shucked pea while adding a touch of whimsy to a salad or stir fry.
And lucky for me (and for you, if you enjoy them too!), these beautiful greens are as nutritious as they are pretty.
Packed full of fiber, folic acid, vitamins A, B-6, C, E, and K, pea shoots are one healthy leaf. A cereal bowl-sized serving of pea shoots actually provides you with half the amount of Vitamin C you need in a day and a quarter of your daily recommended amount of Vitamin A. Pea shoots also contain good amounts of potassium, thiamin, and riboflavin.
Pea shoots are full of carotenes—powerful antioxidants that prevent disease and protect you from cell damage.
You should be able to find pea shoots at your local farmers’ market early in the summer, but they tend to have quite a short season. When you’re shopping for pea shoots, choose bright green shoots that look crisp and fresh. Eat them within a day or two of purchase. I suggest keeping them in the crisper drawer, wrapped in a damp paper towel.
Enjoy your pea shoots raw, either as the base greens for a salad or as an addition to your salads. Add them to your soups or stir fries just at the end of cooking time (they take no time to cook).
I think you will love these yummy green treats as much as I do!
Because I’ve been a nutritionist for over twenty years, folks ask me all the time what supplements they should be taking. My answer is always the same: You have to cover your bases. Remember that supplements are just that—supplemental nutrients to an already healthy diet. 🙂
That said, I believe it is important for everyone to use supplements. Unfortunately, our soil has been depleted of many of its nutrients, so there are many minerals we’re just not getting from our food the way we used to. Supplements are like an insurance policy, covering you in the places you might miss.