Peas lose their sweetness and delicate flavor as they mature. Those of the best quality are young, fresh, tender and sweet. Quality is indicated by the color and condition of the pod, which should be bright green, somewhat velvety to the touch and fresh in appearance. Some varieties have large puffy pods that stand out away from the peas so that they never appear to be well filled even though the peas are well developed. The pods should be well to fairly well filled and the peas well developed. Pods of immature peas are usually flat, dark green in color and may have a wilted appearance.
Pods that are swollen, of poor color, or more or less flecked with grayish specks may be in an advanced stage of maturity and the peas may be tough and of poor flavor. A yellowish appearance indicates age or damage. Peas with such appearance are poor in flavor or too tough for satisfactory table use. Watersoaked pods should be avoided as well as those that show evidence of mildew.
Thursday, January 12, 2006