My friend Judy came into Amber Waves the other day and recited the Dr. Joel Fuhrman GOMBS diet to me. GOMBS is an acronym for the foods that prevent cancer:
G = greens, esp. broccoli, but even green tea is good
O = onions, and that includes all of that family
M = mushrooms (every mushroom has anti-cancer properties, not just reishi or shiitake)
B = berries
S = seeds
I started thinking about a good side dish incorporating some of these foods, and as snap peas were on the counter:
Snap Peas, Shiitakes, and Onions
1/2 lb. fresh snap peas
1 large onion, peeled and sliced thinly root to top
4-5 dried shiitake mushrooms
1 T olive oil
1 T tamari or soy sauce
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1 T sesame seeds
Put dried mushrooms into a small bowl and pour boiling water over them, just to cover. Allow them to rehydrate while you prep the peas and onion. You can use fresh shiitakes, but they seem to lack the wonderful flavor of the dried.
Clean snap peas by pulling off one end towards the other, stripping the tougher vein away from the pod. New tender pods don’t need this, older ones do. Wash them and cut them in thirds, or halve the small ones.
Reserve the soaking liquid, and slice the now soft shiitake into strips, discarding the tough stem.
Saute the onion in the olive oil over medium heat until wilted, then add the snap peas and shiitakes and the soaking liquid. Stir until water is almost entirely evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add the soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil and sesame seeds, stir briefly, and serve. Once the peas are in the pan, try to keep cooking time at around 3 minutes, as you don’t want to overcook them. This recipe would be terrific in winter with broccoli or cabbage and a little longer on the flame.