Pass the Talking Peas, Please
A recently-publicized study may distress compassionate plant-eaters. Several months ago, scientists from Israel's Blaustein Institute for Desert Research at Ben-Gurion University published evidence that pea plants in a drought can send warning signals through their roots to other pea plants via shared soil. The alerted plants then prepare for the environmental stress. This information inspired a New York Times Opinionator post this weekend about the ethics of eating intelligent plant life. Unsurprisingly, many commenters are not amused by the premise that we could one day empathize with certain plants like we do animals. Plus, what would even the most cautious diner eat? Until more research suggests otherwise, we'll continue to respect vegetables by preparing them in delicious ways. Lovable peas star in this simple vinegar-braised chicken recipe. Combining leeks, fresh herbs and luxurious crème fraîche, the dish is elegant but fast enough to make for a weeknight dinner.