Plump, crunchy, sweet, and edible pod-and-all, snap peas are one of summer’s easiest hand-to-mouth treats (their flat cousins, snow peas, are also tasty). Look for lively green tint and firmness. Bag and refrigerate for no more than a few days; otherwise they turn starchy. Remove strings by pulling the stem end along each pea’s seam like a zipper. Eat raw, or blanch in boiling water for 1 minute, and then plunge into ice water; this sets the color and barely cooks the peas inside, heightening sweetness.

Try it

Salad. Combine blanched, halved snap peas with raspberries, blueberries, and toasted walnuts; mound on mixed greens with a raspberry-vinaigrette drizzle.

Pasta. Sauté minced garlic in fresh lemon juice and white wine until tender. Cook delicate angel hair pasta al dente; drain, and then toss with lemon-wine sauce, snap peas, halved cherry tomatoes, slivered fresh basil, and Gorgonzola cheese.

Herb mix. Melt a tablespoon of butter in a sauté pan; then add snap peas and stir 1 minute until hot. Toss quickly with sea salt and chopped fresh herbs; good combos include mint and chives, parsley and basil, tarragon and lemon balm. 

Simple Sesame Snap Peas 

This quick and tasty dish is perfect finger food for a picnic. View Recipe.