My grandparents used to keep two huge deep freezers in their basement where they stored bags and bags of the fruit and vegetables they picked in summertime. I cherish the memories of me and my cousins sitting around shelling peas (which my grandparents would buy by the hundreds from the U-pick farm in Starlight, Indiana). Sure we kids were an excellent source of free labor, but what did we know? We had a blast. Life just seemed so much slower and easier back then, when you could sit around with your family and have a lot of laughs enjoying such simple pleasures.

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a one pound bag of freshly shelled spring peas being sold by one of the farmers at our local farmer's market and I was elated. To me, the farmer's market has become the second best thing to a U-pick farm for me. As much as I love the idea of sitting around with my kids picking fresh peas out of their pods, it's not something we can realistically do on a regular basis. So being able to enjoy and provide my family with farm fresh peas and not have to invest all of that time and labor is a life saver.

Most kids I know love peas because of their vibrant green color, soft texture and sweet flavor. Bursting with 8 vitamins and 7 nutrients -- including Vitamin K, folic acid, B6 and dietary fiber -- peas are a great veggie choice for kids.

Instead of incorporating them into a dish with a ton of other ingredients, spring peas get to be the star of this simple recipe. From start to finish, you can have this meal on the table in less then 15 minutes with happy faces all around -- no child labor necessary!!

This recipe is part of Food Network's Summer Fest. Check out all the other awesome recipes below!

Dishin & DishesSmashed Pea Bruschetta with Mint
Feed Me PhoebeSweet Pea and Green Onion Soup
Taste With the EyesPeas and Pasta with a Garlicky Yogurt Sauce and Smoky Walnuts
DevourQuick Salad with Peas
Napa Farmhouse 1885Pasta with Spring Peas, Mushrooms and Greens
Red or Green?Szechuan Spring Peas, Asparagus, Pine Nuts and Brown Rice Salad
Blue Apron BlogSweet Corn & Pea Fritters with Pea Tendril Salad
Pinch My SaltHomemade Tuna Noodle Casserole
Domesticate MeClean Out Fridge Frittata
Virtually HomemadeSummer Lasagna with Skinny Alfredo Sauce
The Sensitive EpicurePea Puree with Roasted Salmon and Chives
Daily*DishinMarinated Spring Pea Salad
The Heritage CookPea, Potato and Bacon Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
FN DishFavorite Shelled Pea Sides

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Peas & Pasta (Serves 4-6)

Prep Time: 0 mins Cook Time: 10 mins

egg free

nut free

Ingredients

  • 1 Lb Pasta, I used Campanelle (they look like little bugles)
  • 2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Peas
  • 1/2 Cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tsp Salt

Preparation

1. Bring 4-6 quarts of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions.
2. In the last 3 minutes of cooking the pasta, add the peas to the pasta and boiling water.
3. Drain the peas and the pasta reserving a 1/4 cup of the pasta water.
4. Pour the pasta, peas, parmesan cheese, salt, olive oil, and reserved water back into the pot or into a bowl and stir to combine.
5. Serve.
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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime should must be easy. My passion is creating simple, healthy recipes that can be enjoyed by the whole family.

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