Photo: John Autry
Green peas are one of spring's finest fleeting pleasures, remarkably sweet and so crisp they snap when you bite. They lend an unmistakable starchy, grassy sweetness to any dish—a far cry from the frozen, shriveled pellets we turn to for winter stews. You may have tried the stunning delicate green shoots (likely cut from immature snow peas) in Chinese restaurants.
With a faint pea flavor, pea shoots are lovely additions to salads, stir-fries, pizzas, and soups. Look for them at farm stands or Asian markets, and get them while you can—the flavor turns bitter at the end of the growing season.