Saturday, September 3, 2011

52 Week Food Storage - Week #31 (Part 3)

Week # 31: 5 lbs Dry Split Peas

I will have to admit these are not my favorite at all so they probably won't be in my food storage plan.  I will just add more of something else to make up for split peas.  

Split Peas are the dried peeled and split seeds of a pod. They come in yellow and green varieties. They have been mechanically split so that they will cook faster. Did you know that dried peas have been a staple of the human diet since prehistoric times? Peas have been found in archeological digs in Egypt, Asia, and Rome. 

They do grow well in cooler high altitude tropical areas. Many cultivars reach maturity about 60 days after planting. Generally, peas are to be grown outdoors during the winter, not in greenhouses. Peas grow best in slightly acidic, well-drained soils. So for all of us in Utah, we’ll for sure need to just buy them. Instead of grow them.

Split Peas are Chock Full of Fiber and Goodness. Full of soluble fiber, peas help to bind up cholesterol-containing bile and move it out of your body. This can help with conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis. A single cup of cooked dried peas in your daily diet provides 65.1% of the recommended daily fiber. They also provide a good amount of protein, two B-vitamins, and several important minerals. Peas also include isoflavones, which are helpful in reducing the risk of breast and prostate cancer.
Peas can also reduce the amount of plaque in your blood vessels and help your heart remain healthy. If you are sensitive to sulfites, which are added to most deli foods and salad bars, the mineral molybdenum will help you detoxify them. Peas can provide you with almost twice the recommended daily allowance of this mineral from a single 1-cup serving. Signs of sulfite sensitivity may include rapid heartbeat, headache, or disorientation.

Split peas come in two varieties: green and yellow. Both can be used for most recipes interchangeably. The most common way is split pea soup. This can be made with left over ham or pork, or kept vegetarian. Oh yeah, Soup again? What else can you do with them?
Split pea dip can be made with herbs, a little olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, a few chopped olives, and some cilantro. It can be enjoyed with pita bread, just like hummus. A pilaf can be made combining split peas with brown rice and seasonings that could be a wonderful change of pace as a side dish. Indian cuisine uses a lot of yellow split peas, which they call daal. They are added to their soups, or used to make fava, which is a puree served with fish, salty foods, or dark leafy greens. They also add split peas to buckwheat or quinoa dishes. With added spices, these dishes can be mild or spicy, whichever you prefer. What about in your scrambled eggs?

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