Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Springtime Dip!

With the arrival of Spring, comes the arrival of fresh green peas to grocery stores, Farmer's markets, and maybe even to your garden! I just love fresh peas, they are one of those vegetables where the fresh version is so much better than the frozen variety, and not even comparable to the canned version!

Green peas are a true nutrient-rich food. One cup of fresh green peas has only 117 calories but supplies an impressive 7 grams of fiber and 8 grams of protein. It also contains the following percentages of our daily requirements: 97% vitamin C, 22% vitamin A, 12% iron, 45% vitamin K, 24% folate, and 26% thiamin!

We all know that kids love dips! Serve this one with whole-wheat pita bread triangles, toasted corn tortilla triangles, or carrot and celery sticks.

Green Pea Guacamole Dip (adapted from AICR Newsletter)
1 cup baby green peas, freshly shelled
1 medium ripe avocado, peeled and pit removed
2 Tablespoons finely chopped red onion
2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
pinch of cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
2 roma tomatoes, finely chopped

In a small saucepan combine the peas and 1/2 cup of water, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 5-6 minutes or until peas are soft. Drain well. Spread the peas on a double layer of paper towels and gently blot dry. Place the peas in a mixing bowl and mash with a fork.

Add the avocado to the bowl and mash until the dip has the desired texture. Add the onion, cilantro, lime juice, and cayenne pepper. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate up to 4 hours if desired or serve immediately.

Just before serving, sprinkle the tomatoes over the top.

Crediting information: Makes 6 servings. Each serving creditable for the 1/2 cup fruit/vegetable requirement at snack for 3-5 year old children.

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