How many of us can remember shelling peas for Mum. Back in the days when the ice box reigned supreme, long before peas came frozen in plastic bags, this was one of two ways to eat peas. The other was the dried pea which (as seen in this month’s Trivia question) has been an integral part of the Australian diet since the First Fleet. This is a time honoured method of making Mushy Peas.
225g dried peas
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
freshly ground black pepper mushy peas.
Soak the peas in a large bowl, in three times their volume of water with the bicarbonate of soda for at least four hours or, if you have the time, overnight.
Drain the peas, rinse under the tap, and place on the stove in a large pan and cover with the water. Cover and bring to the boil and once boiled, remove all the foam, reduce the heat and simmer the peas for 1½-2 hours, stirring from time to time.
The peas should be soft and mushy in texture but not too dry. If they are wet, continue cooking over the heat with the lid off to dry out a little. Beat in the butter and season.
That’s enough culinary culture for now. Some time we may go a step further with the “pea soup and pie floater” so popular in the “Café de Curb”.