Our Favorite Southern Peas

1. The zipper cream, invented by a Florida agronomist in 1972, is actually a cross between a crowder pea and a cream pea; the variety gets its name from the fact that the peas can be whisked from their hull in a zipping motion.
2. Though not in the same genus as Southern peas, butter beans exhibit a similarly luscious texture and taste and are often lumped into the Southern-peas category; we like the speckled variety.
3. The light-hued, unblemished surface of cream peas accounts for the name, though the moniker is often attributed to the cooked peas' butter-soft texture.
4. The pink-eyed purple hull has a mottled hull and a red spot at the center of each pea.
5. Crowders have a squarish shape, a result of their being densely packed inside the hull (hence the name); brown crowders (shown), which have a deep, earthy flavor, are the most prevalent in the South.

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