Cook1 hr 30 mins
This is a delicious meze (appetizer) made with yellow split peas (or lentils). Santorini is the island that is known to grow the best yellow peas in Greece - and this recipe derives from there. It is very delicious and healthy - use it as a dip or slather it on good-quality, crusty bread and enjoy with a glass of white wine! Although this looks like a long time to make a recipe - it is mostly passive cooking time of the peas - the recipe itself is a breeze!
- 2 cups yellow split peas, picked over and rinsed
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4 -6 garlic cloves
- 1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 -4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 3 -4 tablespoons dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons dried oregano, crumbled, plus more for garnish
- fresh ground black pepper
All or a few of the following toppings
- 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 -3 tablespoons pitted and chopped kalamata olives
- 4 -5 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and coarsely chopped
- 1 medium tomato, cored, peeled, seeded, diced and drained
- 2 -3 spring onions, thinly sliced (white plus most of the green parts)
- 3 sprigs arugula, coarsely chopped
- 3 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
- extra virgin olive oil
- Place the split peas in a large pot, add water to cover by 4 inches and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, skimming often, for 5 minutes. Add the bay leaves and simmer for 40 minutes more, stirring occasionally and adding a little warm water as needed to keep the peas covered as they cook. Add 1 teaspoon of the salt and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes more, or until the peas are soft and almost dry.
- Puree the peas with a stick (immersion) blender, or transfer to a food processor and puree. Let the puree cool completely; it will thicken considerably.
- In a large mortar, grind the garlic with the remaining 1 teaspoon salt into a smooth paste. Add 2 cups or so of the puree and continue grinding to incorporate the garlic. Or use a blender or a small food processor.
- In a large bowl, combine the garlic mixture, the remaining pea puree, the oil, 3 tablespoons each vinegar and wine, the oregano and pepper to taste, stirring vigorously to incorporate. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or overnight.
- If the skordalia seems too thick, add a little vinegar, wine or water to thin. Spread on a large plate, sprinkle with oregano, garnish with toppings of your choice and serve.
- Note: Instead of yellow split peas, you can also make this with dried peeled fava beans or with the same amount of cooked mashed chickpeas or white beans, such as cannellini.