Tuesday, 30 August 2016

pease pudding cold

The yellow split pea, known as fava here.  They don't need pre-soaking are high in protein, low in fat and all traditional greeks love them.  My mother-in-law used to cook fava on the days she baked her  sourdough bread.  Having risen well before dawn to use the sourdough sponge ready from the night before she kneaded six or seven huge loaves which were sent  to the local baker mid-morning and picked them up early afternoon. 
After a couple of hours she would send one of us down to the bakers to make sure the loaves were already in his huge woodfired  oven and that he hadn't set hers aside for some other neighbour's loaves to cook while hers spoiled.

All of the family were rounded up to help carry the bread and the tradition was that she made the fava while the loaves were being baked and when they were carried back we were allowed to dunk thick slices of the fresh bread into the smooth mix of fava beans with a very generous amount of her own olive oil.

Fava can eaten warm or cold always with lots of sliced raw onion.  A totally healthy combo.  Split peas, extra virgin olive oil and raw onion and lemon juice.  The best split peas come from the island of Santorini.

They are very easy to make.  Just fill up your pot with water and add about a cup of split peas.  Boil slowly until they form a thick soupy mush.  This takes about an hour.  Make sure they don't boil dry but you don't want too much liquid at the end of the cooking.

Add salt and when cool make into a puree with a food processor or one of those stick blenders.

To serve put in a soup plate, add lots of olive oil and mix really well.  Top with thinly sliced onions and add a squirt of fresh lemon juice.

Keep the fava in the fridge.  As it cools it will thicken and you will almost be able to cut it with a knife.  Just mix that olive oil in and it will turn into a smooth yellow paste.

Local traditional greeks do not add caramelized onions, oregano, bay leaves or garlic but you do find these variations elsewhere.

Dhal - in India dhal is the name for these split peas and a number of thick indian stews made with them.  Being India the stew is nice and spicy and can be served with rice and flatbread.

Pease pudding - in England the split peas are made into a savoury pudding often boiled with bacon or the ham bone.  Can be served with faggots, saveloys or stottie cakes apparently.


  1. Really just another version of Humus; sounds very good. One of the meals I really enjoy when feeling virtuous is a simple Rice and Dhal. The only 'pulse' commonly eaten here in France are the green Puy Lentils.

    1. I like using red lentils but they are expensive here. I haven't seen the green. Oh for a good indian dish. I rarely make anything like that here because I'm the only one that will eat it. You've given me the idea though. Time to indulge I think.

  2. Good old pease pudding! My husband is a Geordie, so pease pudding in a pork or ham sandwich is part of his childhood food memories. I made some the other day and ended up singing 'Pease pudding hot, pease pudding cold, pease pudding in the pot 9 days old' with our grandchildren. They enjoyed the song more than the pease pudding. All the more for us then!

    Stottie cakes - another bit of his food history, I wonder if I can find a recipe for those...

    1. I always think of that ditty when we have fava. Even got the kids to learn it. Stottie cakes....let me know how they go!!

  3. I had this as a child and I wasn't that impressed. But now I like split peas so I guess I should try it again

  4. Just cook a small amount. Some people like it and others definitely do not! It is more of a side dish really.