Finding self-sown seedlings is always a treat. But to find self-sown seedlings that are producing an abundance of food is fantastic. This is a Cow PeaVigna unguiculata subsp. cylindrica. Otherwise known as a Catjang. They are closely related to snake beans and black eye beans.
Originally I planted these 2 years ago as a Green Manure crop. Not realising what they are, each spring a new plant will pop up somewhere within the garden. These I would simple ignore and pull out eventually over winter, once dead. But this summer curiosity got the better of me. And I discovered ‘They are edible!’
Cow Peas are a climbing plant, but will also happily sprawl along the ground, like the one above. Once the pods begin to dry, they are ready for harvesting. From one plant I have harvested to date 200g of seed, roughly 1 cup.
Inside is tiny little seeds, that are perfect to add to lentils, dahl and stews.