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Sweet peas might be the one vegetable that’s just as good (if not sometimes better) frozen as fresh. Sure, you can add peas to any dish—from pasta to risotto to curries to stews—but here are six ways to use them that will really let them shine during their peak season.
1. Soups. Sweet peas springify any soup: Use them in place of starchy split peas in a pureed soup with ham, or add them to minestrone instead of beans. Or practice to root-to-stalk (pod-to-pea?) cooking and make a delicate broth with the pea pods.
2. Salads. Speaking of root-to-stalk, team up peas with their tender, delicious greens and shoots when you can find them.
3. Pancakes. Update the blini and eat more veggies for brunch by adding peas to a savory pancake for smoked salmon.
4. Falafel. Turn the ubiquitous Middle Eastern patty green by preparing it with a mix of sweet and split peas.
5. Samosas. Wow your friends at your next cocktail party and stuff empanada wrappers with a lovely spiced pea filling, and then fry them. Serve with sparkling wine sweetened with a hit of pomegranate molasses.
6. Dips. Lighten guacamole by adding mashed cooked peas, or sub peas for caloric chickpeas in hummus.
Kristin Donnelly is a former Food & Wine editor and cofounder of Stewart & Claire, an all-natural line of lip balms made in Brooklyn.