Make Your Own Pea Sheller
By Renee Gerber
, last updated May 24, 2011
Making your own pea sheller comes in especially handy when you regularly buy fresh peas in pods and need to open them for cooking. The alternative is to shell your peas by hand, which can be time consuming as well as painful, should a shred of the shell somehow slip underneath your fingernail. Knives can also cause accidents.
If you are set on making a pea sheller from scratch, you will need a few materials and tools. Make a trip to your local home improvement or hardware store. Pick up some wood blocks, preferably in pine or cedar. Make sure you have a good set of tools, including a pair of pliers, a No. 24 bevel edged X-Acto blade, a hammer and nails. You will also find that a vise to use for clamping will be very helpful while you are making your new pea sheller.
Use a circular saw to cut a two-inch piece of wood from a 1x2 slat of pine, cedar or other type of durable wood. Next, use an electric handheld drill to bore a hole through it. Make sure the cavity is larger than the diameter of the pea pods you will be shelling with the apparatus. Then, use a vise to clamp the wood down effectively so that it stays intact and you can continue working on the next step. Make sure the bored ends of the wood are exposed, and use your pliers if necessary to hold the piece in place. Use your No. 24 bevel edged X-Acto blade at the top to angle a cut in line with the hole you drilled.
Drive the X-Acto blade into the wood with the assistance of a hammer, tapping it at the top. The point should reach about an eighth of an inch into the hole, basically only far enough to cut the pea pods' shells and not the peas themselves when you are shelling. If the sheller is made correctly, the peas will slide into a small tunnel after the pod itself is sliced.