4 Things To Make With A Bag Of Frozen Peas

Nov 8, 2016

Since frozen peas were invented by Clarence Birdseye in the 1920s, bags of them have been staples of household freezers, called into service as a nightly side dish or to add a punch of colour (and nutrition) to soups, stews, curries and the like. If, in your house, frozen peas are still served boiled or microwaved in a little green pile beside the mashed potatoes and meatloaf, or that omnipresent bag of peas is mostly used as a flexible ice pack, here are a few new ways to turn a bag of peas into a respectable dinner or side dish.

Make Keema – A Quick Beef Curry

a plate with beef keema on it

Set a big, heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add a drizzle of oil and cook a chopped onion and a pound of lean ground beef, breaking up the meat with a spoon until it’s no longer pink. Add a couple crushed garlic cloves, some grated fresh ginger, a small spoonful of curry paste, a couple chopped tomatoes, a handful of chopped fresh cilantro and a cup of frozen peas. Cook for 5-8 minutes, or until the tomatoes have cooked down and the peas have thawed. Add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice and season with salt; serve over rice, with a dollop of yogurt.

Toss Them With Spaghetti And Parmesan 

peas in a dish with pasta

Cook spaghetti or linguini as you normally would, adding a healthy shake of frozen peas to the cooking water during the last few minutes of cooking time. Drain, reserving a cupful of the starchy pasta water, and return the pasta and peas to the pot. Add a knob of butter, a healthy handful of freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and enough of the pasta water to make a slippery sauce as you toss it all together with tongs. Serve with extra Parmesan. 

You'll also love: 5 Delicious Ways To Use A Bag Of Frozen Berries!

Simmer Some Quick Soup

a bowl of pea soup

Pea soup is not restricted to dried peas. Chop and sauté an onion in butter until soft. Add a clove of garlic and a good shake of frozen peas — a cup or two, depending on how much soup you want to make — and cook for another minute. Add enough stock to cover the peas by about half an inch, season with salt and pepper and a pinch of thyme, if you like. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, then puree with a hand-held immersion blender, adding a splash of cream if you like.  Cook them with cream. Instead of boiling peas, shake them straight from the freezer into a skillet set over medium-high heat with a dab of butter. Cook, shaking the pan occasionally, for 5-7 minutes, adding a splash of heavy cream or coffee cream about halfway through. Season with salt and pepper and fresh thyme, rosemary or basil — whatever is in season or you have on hand. (Just salt and pepper is delicious, too.)

Make A Creamy Pasta

a bowl of creamy pasta

Sauté sliced mushrooms, diced ham and frozen peas in a skillet with a drizzle of oil and dab of butter. Add a big splash of cream and a spoonful of soft goat cheese or Boursin, and toss with chunky pasta like penne or rotini.

Article Author Julie Van Rosendaal
Julie Van Rosendaal

Read more from Julie here.

Julie Van Rosendaal is the author of six best-selling cookbooks (with a seventh due out this fall), the food editor of Parents Canada magazine and the food and nutrition columnist on the Calgary Eyeopener on CBC Radio One. She is a recipe developer, TV personality, food stylist and writes about food for local, national and international publications. She is perhaps best known as the voice behind her popular food blog, Dinner with Julie, where she documents real life at home in Calgary with her husband and nine-year-old son. Connect on twitter @dinnerwithjulie.


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