Healthy Ingredient of the Week – Peas

If there’s any day to celebrate the color green, it’s today.  The recipe below features at least four different shades of green, thanks to its many healthy ingredients.  However, the star of this dish, and today’s healthy ingredient, is an often-overlooked nutritional superstar:  the pea.  It’s easy to think of peas as inexpensive filler ingredients, since that’s how they’re often used in uninventive dishes.  In reality, peas should be anything but, due to both their unique flavor and nutrient content.  Peas, a member of the legume family (whose other members include beans and peanuts), are a good source of protein and fiber, and an excellent source of Vitamins A, C, and K.  Making a pea-centric dish is a surefire way to increase your intake of key nutrients and feel full and satisfied long after the meal is over.

Very Green Ravioli

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cups frozen no-salt-added green peas
1 cup low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
¼ cup 1% milk
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
teaspoon ground black pepper
16 ounces fresh or frozen spinach ravioli, prepared according to package instructions
4 packed cups baby arugula or baby arugula salad mix
½ large lemon
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint

1.  Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat until the solids are bubbly and brown, about 2 minutes.
2.  Add peas and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes.
3.  Add broth, cook for 2 minutes more and then carefully transfer to blender.
4.  Add milk, salt and pepper and purée until very smooth.
5.  Toss in a bowl with hot ravioli.
6.  Arrange arugula in four wide, shallow bowls. Top with a squeeze of lemon, the sauced ravioli and mint. Serve immediately.

Recipe adapted from Whole Foods

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