Fava is a mashed peas with olive oil and lemon juice. It is one of the most popular Greek mezes. The texture is similar to hummus, and the taste is familiar. This is not surprising because both chickpeas and peas come from the same family – legumes.
Fava can be prepared in two ways. Boil the peas to a mushy state and grind with a fork or boil and beat with a blender. In the second case, the texture is more creamy and hummus-like. In addition, using a blender also allows you to beat to a smooth consistency and flavor additives: roasted onions, carrots and garlic. In my opinion, this makes the flavor of the fava richer and more interesting. That’s why I’m definitely in favor of the second option. But if you don’t have a blender, you know that there is an alternative method. Only in this case, it is desirable to remove the roasted garlic, onion and carrots, or not to use.
- 200 g (7,1 oz) yellow split peas (~ 1 cup)
- 650 ml (3 cups) water
- 1 onion
- 1 carrot
- 3-4 garlic cloves
- 1 lemon juice and zest
- 40 ml (2,7 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
— an immersion blender or a stationary blender, I use a Bamix M150.
Step by Step directions
Soak the peas in water and sort them, removing blackened and green peas, if any. Leave for 30 minutes.
Peel and coarsely chop 1 carrot.
Peel and coarsely chop one onion.
Crush 3-4 cloves of garlic with a knife, peel.
Drain the water from the peas.
Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a >2-liter pot. Add chopped vegetables and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
Add the peas and pour in 650 ml (3 cups) of water.
Bring to a boil, turn down the heat to low and cook for 30-40 minutes. The peas will soften and there will be almost no liquid left in the pot. If the water boils too quickly, so that the peas do not burn – add a little water.
Grate the zest of one lemon directly into the pan and squeeze out the juice. Salt with a teaspoon of salt and pour in 40 ml (2,7 tbsp) of extra-virgin olive oil. Puree with a blender until smooth.
In the photo – I went a little overboard with the water, you will have a slightly less watery texture. In any case, remember that after cooling, the mass will thicken, and after an overnight in the refrigerator, it will thicken even more.
Transfer to a bowl to serve. Garnish the fava usually with olives, thinly sliced sweet onions and/or capers. Eat with sliced vegetables, dipping them in the fava, bread or pita bread (have you tried pan-fried pita bread yet?).
Greek Fava or Yellow Peas Hummus
- 200 g yellow split peas (~ 1 cup)
- 650 мл water
- 1 onion
- 1 carrot
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1 lemon (juice and zest)
- 40 ml olive oil (extra virgin)
- 1 tsp. salt
- Soak the peas in water for 30 minutes. Peel, removing blackened and green peas, if any.
- Peel and coarsely chop the carrot and onion. Crush the garlic with a knife and peel it.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a >2-liter saucepan. Add chopped vegetables and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
- Drain the water from the peas. Add the peas to a pot and add 650 ml of water. Bring to a boil, turn down the heat to low and cook for 30-40 minutes.
- Grate the zest of one lemon and squeeze the juice directly into the pan. Salt with a teaspoon of salt and add olive oil. Puree with a blender until smooth. Taste for salt. Add more if needed.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with sliced vegetables, bread or pita bread. Garnish with olives, thinly sliced sweet onions and/or capers.