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Sep 3, 2000 04:17 PM

pea leaves preparation

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I just got back from my favorite asian market with a bag of pea leaves. Anybody have a suggestion on how I should prepare them?

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  1. I tried once and it didn't seem the same as in the restaurants. Would like to know also.

    1. There are two kinds of pea shoot (Cant.=Dow Myoo), one is the growing tip of a pea plant and is about 4 to 6 inches long with leaves the size of a US quarter and tendrils and sometimes blossoms. These are pinched off several times during the lifetime of the plant. The other is literally the sprout of a pea and is about 3 inches long with just a few delicate green leaves the size of a kidney bean and a fine, white stem, very much like any other sprout, alfalfa or radish, but shorn of its roots.
      Both types can be treated as follows:
      Clean and wash as you would any other leafy green, and drain well. Heat a little oil in a pan and get it real hot, throw in some salt, a slice or two of ginger, a pinch of sugar. Add the greens and toss a few minutes (tongs work great here), then add a small amount of water or preferably clear chicken stock, enough to generate some steam. Immediately clap a lid on the pan and wait until greens are wilted, but still bright green and ever so slightly crisp. Turn out onto a plate and enjoy.
      Other additions (garlic, soy sauce, oyster sauce) may please you more although I think this really masks the lovely sweetness of the pea shoot. You may also use the cooked greens as a bed for a seafood dish in a light sauce (braised abalone, for instance).

      4 Replies
      1. re: Maria Eng
        Joan Winston

        Maria, thanks so much for the pea leaves method! I had them in Hong Kong and loved them. I buy them at the Santa Monica farmers market but never knew how to cook them properly. I hope they have them this week.

        1. re: Joan Winston

          Joan, you're very welcome. Remember, though, to feel free to jazz them up to your personal taste after you've tried them this way once. They are my very favorite leafy green next to spinach.

          1. re: Joan Winston
            Joan Winston

            Hi Maria. I finally got pea leaves at the Santa Monica farmers market yesterday. I made them last night, according to your instructions. They were absolutely fabulous! Thanks a lot.

          2. re: Maria Eng

            I tried Maria's recipe last night and it was superb. Those are wonderful greens. I recommend them and the recipe to anyone interested.