For the last few years we’ve grown sugar snap peas in our garden. Before I grew these little crispy gems, I hardly ever ate them; they just weren’t on my radar.
I actually started planting them with the kids when they were really little because the seeds are so much fun to start indoors between two damp paper towels on a cookie sheet. They sprout quickly and they love, love, love our damp chilly springs. For five seasons in a row now they have been the very first thing I’ve planted in the ground in late February or March. They’ve fed my need to garden even before it’s really gardening season. Then later, as we harvest them, they’ve fed me and my family with their crunchy sweet taste. Even Jasper is a fan.
Two years ago I stumbled upon Smitten Kitchen’s recipe for pickled sugar snap peas and discovered another reason I love this little veggie. Pickled sugar snap peas are awesome!
So this year I was so excited to plant sugar snap peas just so I could pickle the gazillion we couldn’t eat right away. Guess what? We did not get one single sugar snap pea this year. Not one.
And it actually had nothing to do with our unusually hot, dry spring and summer, but because I mistakenly planted snow peas instead of sugar snap peas.
Instead of starting them inside this year I just planted the seeds directly in the garden soil. And I’m pretty sure when I planted the seeds something was trying to send a message to my brain saying, “Wait! Wait! This isn’t what you want to plant.” Duh, could it have been the words, SNOW PEAS on the package? But the exhausted mom-me went ahead anyway, because the actual picture on the package looked a lot more like fat sugar snap peas. I’ve made many mistakes in my garden over the years, and this one bummed me out. I really wanted to pickle sugar snap peas, BECAUSE THEY ARE ADDICTIVELY AWESOME! Plus I was annoyed at the conceited or exhausted part of me that ignored the part of me who actually read the words, SNOW PEAS. How many me’s do I have? And could they all just listen to each other and help each other out once in a while. I’d appreciate it.
Snow peas are rather beautiful, from their pinkish white blossoms to the preppy green color of the pod.
I love how the sunlight filtering through shows the veins or skeleton, almost like an x-ray.
But they just don’t measure up to sugar snap peas in the taste department for me. I know some of you might be thinking, they’re not that different, but they are, they are nowhere near as sweet and crunchy. Lily and Jasper still enjoyed picking them off the vine and snacking on them a bit, but I was annoyed at myself.
Luckily the me that likes to eat and cook usually wins out over all the other mes, so I bought some from the farmer’s market and pickled them. Craving satisfied!!
I hope you enjoy these little pickled nuggets of deliciousness as much as I do. They are easy to make and do not require any canning. Smitten Kitchen’s recipe is super easy; I’ve just expanded on it a bit; both are tart and delicious! Just pickle and refrigerate; and if you’re as impatient as I am, you can even eat them the next day.
- 1 cup cold water
- 1 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1/2 tablespoon canning salt
- 1/2 tablespoon sugar
- 4 garlic cloves, sliced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon peppercorns
- 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2-3 cups sugar snap peas
- Prepare peas by removing strings.
- Place cold water in a 2-cup measuring cup or pyrex bowl.
- Heat vinegar, salt and sugar in a non-reactive saucepan until sugar and salt are dissolved.
- Pour vinegar mixture into the cold water and let brine cool.
- Pack peas, spices and garlic into canning jars, about 1 pint jar or 2 Weck 9.8 oz jars.
- Pour brine over peas, cover and refrigerate overnight.
- After 24 hours, dig in and feast!
- You may have some brine left over.