Edamame beans won’t produce a giant beanstalk and lead to a pot of gold but they’re still magic. Low in calories and high in protein and other healthy stuff there’s loads of reasons why these little beans are now so popular.Edamame beans are immature green soy beans. Originating in Asia they have been valued by the Chinese for thousands of years. Also, popular in Japan where the word Edamame means “beans on branches” which is pretty much how they grow.
Edamame, as a soy bean, contain all 9-amino acid and are a complete protein. Perfect for vegans and vegetarians and for meat eaters who fancy a meat free meal.
Soya beans have until recently been tricky to grow in our climate. However, the new Suttons Edamame Soya Bean is a vast improvement and will deliver early cropping success.
You’ll find full instruction on the Suttons seed packet but in summary:
- Sow from April to mid-June, in pots or trays on a windowsill or in the greenhouse
- Germination will take 7 to 14 days
- Pot on and keep in a light position until the danger of frost is passed. Alternatively, once the soil has warmed up they can be sown direct, protected by fleece or cloches
- Plant out once the danger of frost has passed, choosing a well-drained yet moist, sunny position
- Plant 15cm apart, in rows 45cm apart
- The plants are self-supporting but may need some help
- Keep weed free and water regularly.
- Pick the pods when they are bright green and you can make out the beans inside
- To remove the beans simply pinch the pod and out they will pop. Or, do it Japanese style and cook the pod. As soon as you bite into it the juicy beans will just pop into your mouth
- Of course, if you prefer you can allow the pods to fully develop meaning that once harvested and dried you will have soy beans.
Care: As with many beans Edamame do contain toxins so need to be cooked before eating.