There are a wide range of uses for green peas, from salads and purees to soups and toppings. They can be eaten raw, but are most often used cooked. Since peas are not particularly long-lasting and lose their flavor quickly, they are most often available in frozen form. There is evidence from Aswad, Syrian, that humans have been eating peas since at least 8000 BC.
From Wikipedia: “The pea is most commonly the small spherical seed or the seed-pod of the pod fruit Pisum sativum. Each pod contains several peas. Pea pods are botanically fruit, since they contain seeds and developed from the ovary of a (pea) flower. The name is also used to describe other edible seeds from the Fabaceae such as the pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan), the cowpea (Vigna unguiculata), and the seeds from several species of Lathyrus.”
“There are many varieties (cultivars) of garden peas. Some of the most common varieties are listed here. PMR indicates some degree of powdery mildew resistance; afila types, also called semi-leafless, have clusters of tendrils instead of leaves. Unless otherwise noted these are so called dwarf varieties which grow to an average height of about 1m. Giving the vines support is recommended, but not required. Extra dwarf are suitable for container growing, reaching only about 25 cm. Tall varieties grow to about 2m with support required.”
“Fresh peas are often eaten boiled and flavored with butter and/or spearmint as a side dish vegetable. Salt and pepper are also commonly added to peas when served. Fresh peas are also used in pot pies, salads and casseroles. Pod peas (particularly sweet cultivars called mange tout and "sugar peas", or the flatter "snow peas," called hé lán dòu, 荷兰豆 in Chinese) are used in stir-fried dishes, particularly those in American Chinese cuisine. Pea pods do not keep well once picked, and if not used quickly, are best preserved by drying, canning or freezing within a few hours of harvest. ...
Dried peas are often made into a soup or simply eaten on their own. In Japan, China, Taiwan and some Southeast Asian countries, including Thailand, the Philippines and Malaysia, peas are roasted and salted, and eaten as snacks. ...
Processed peas are mature peas which have been dried, soaked and then heat treated (processed) to prevent spoilage—in the same manner as pasteurizing. Cooked peas are sometimes sold dried and coated with wasabi, salt, or other spices.”
Soup: “In the UK, dried yellow split peas are used to make pease pudding (or "pease porridge"), a traditional dish. In North America, a similarly traditional dish is split pea soup.
Pea soup is eaten in many other parts of the world, including northern Europe, parts of middle Europe, Russia, Iran, Iraq and India.”
“Peas are starchy, but high in fiber, protein, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin K, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, iron, zinc and lutein. Dry weight is about one-quarter protein and one-quarter sugar. Pea seed peptide fractions have less ability to scavenge free radicals than glutathione, but greater ability to chelate metals and inhibit linoleic acid oxidation.”
Peas in medicine:
“Some people experience allergic reactions to peas, as well as lentils, with vicilin or convicilin as the usual allergens.
Favism, or Fava-bean-ism, is a genetic deficiency of the enzyme glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase that affects Jews, other Middle Eastern Semitic peoples and other descendants of the Mediterranean coastal regions. In this condition, the toxic reaction to eating most, if not all, beans is hemolytic anemia, and in severe cases the released circulating free hemoglobin causes acute kidney injury.”
“In modern times peas are usually boiled or steamed, which breaks down the cell walls and makes the taste sweeter and the nutrients more bioavailable. Along with broad beans and lentils, these formed an important part of the diet of most people in the Middle East, North Africa and Europe during the Middle Ages. By the 17th and 18th centuries, it had become popular to eat peas "green", that is, while they are immature and right after they are picked. New cultivars of peas were developed by the English during this time, which became known as "garden" or "English" peas. The popularity of green peas spread to North America. Thomas Jefferson grew more than 30 cultivars of peas on his estate. With the invention of canning and freezing of foods, green peas became available year-round, and not just in the spring as before.”
“Pea grading involves sorting peas by size, in which the smallest peas are graded as the highest quality for their tenderness. Brines may be used, in which peas are floated, from which their density can be determined.”
“In 2005, a poll of 2,000 people revealed the pea to be Britain's seventh favourite culinary vegetable.”