Edamame – Time to Think About Planting & Adding To Menus
Edamame is the soybean that is picked young and green, steamed or boiled for five minutes, then popped out of the pod right into your mouth. Edamame combine the best of garden peas and lima beans in both flavor and texture.
With a high-quality protein, phytoestrogens, and a good amount of calcium and vitamin A, soybeans have been considered a nutritional powerhouse.
Edamame is easy to grow. A number of varieties are available, differing slightly in flavor and how long it takes before the beans are ready for harvest. They tolerate summer heat better than garden peas and they withstand cool summer nights better than lima beans. They need warm soil to get started, so do not plant until about the date of the last killing frost, which is about the time to plant corn and green beans. When it is time to plant, sow the seeds an inch deep in rows 15 to 30 inches apart.
The best-quality edamame demand timely harvest. Picked prematurely, the beans will taste bland. Picked too late and pods are becoming dry. Harvest edamame pods when the beans within are fully plump and before the bright green pods begin to yellow. The five minute steaming or boiling readies pods for fresh eating or once cooled, for the freezer.