on the patio, nearly june

Every year, right around when the intoxicating lilacs bloom, King Peas arrive at my market. They’re heaped in an unassuming cardboard box, nestled between the brussels sprouts and green beans. I greedily await their arrival, stuffing alarmingly large handfuls into a produce bag and rushing to the check out line before I’m stopped. I text my mom: “The peas are here!”

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These peas are the long-awaited reward for trudging through our Michigan winters. They’re a subtle reminder that nature has not forgotten us and can still bear such sweetness.

I always make the same dish – Jamie’s Spaghetti and Meatballs. It’s the perfect showcase: a simple tomato sauce and riotous spicy sausage meatballs, topped with a confetti of soft herbs and starchy raw peas – shucked at the table. This year, I added rose and a dear friend. Just what I needed.

p.s. Because I buy so many peas, I usually have enough to make this incredible pasta dish as well. It may be a toss up!

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