Edamame are soybeans, but not just any old soybeans: they’re varieties that are intended to be harvested & eaten while still green. They are very tasty, sweet & a bit nutty, and many people have reported to us that their children love them. They are also happen to be very labor intensive to pick, which is why the CSA distribution quantities aren’t huge. These are definitely a seasonal treat, usually appearing sometime in July or early August.
HANDLING & STORAGE
Store in the refrigerator until use, preferably within a week.
IN THE KITCHEN
Bring a good-sized pot of salted water to a full boil. Add the edameme (still in their shells). Boil ~5 minutes, until beans are tender. Drain. Either serve as is, allowing the eaters to shell & eat (similar to peanuts), or shell them for inclusion in another dish.
Shelled edamame make an excellent addition to stir fries, soups, and more.
Freezing: Edamame freeze well. Blanch first for ~4-5 minutes in a pot of boiling water. Remove from boiling water and submerge in cold water to stop the cooking. Now choose whether time or freezer space is at more of a premium: Do you want to freeze with shells on or off?
To freeze with shells on: Pat pods dry on a towel, spread on a cookie sheet & freeze. After about a day, transfer the loose-frozen pods to bag. When ready to use, take the pods directly from the freezer and dump into a pot of boiling water; boil for ~5 minutes, until tender. Proceed as with fresh edamame.
To freeze with shells off: Shell the blanched edamame, and pack the beans in an appropriately sized container or bag. Freeze. To use, defrost the container and add beans to dishes as desired.
VARIETIES WE GROW
In the past, we’ve had good success with Shirofumi. We tried Midori Giant in 2012 & 2013 with mixed success. For future plantings, we’re planning to do some more research on what varieties are best suited to our latitude.