Fresh New England peas were one of my Dad’s most favorite foods. So much so that after he moved to Colorado, my standard Father’s Day Present was to send him overnight a small cooler of fresh peas. He not only enjoyed eating them but was always willing to sit on the deck or at the kitchen table and help shell them. However, in his opinion there was only one way to serve these peas - in the cooking water. A great aunt of mine (she was from New Mexico and did not know any better) got thoroughly reprimanded for “throwing out the pea water”. I really like and always serve fresh peas this way too.
Heat water to boiling using a ratio of
1/3 to 1/2 c water to
1 c fresh, shelled peas (I prefer English shell peas when available)
Put peas into boiling water for just about one minute if peas are small, a little longer for larger peas. Taste a sample pea and do not overcook! Peas should be a little crunchy as they will keep cooking in the hot water.
Put peas AND water into individual dishes. Add, to taste
Salt and pepper