Santorini is known as the beautiful Greek island with white-washed homes, marbled streets, blue domes and dazzling views. Situated perfectly in the Aegean Sea, it boasts some of the most breathtaking sunsets in the world. Santorini is a must visit. Besides the stunning beauty, Santorini is famous for producing the best yellow split peas in Greece. Tavernas all over the island use those split peas to create an island favorite—FAVA.
Do not confuse this dish with fava beans. However fava (FAH-va) got its name, it’s a simple puree of yellow split peas, onions, olive oil and herbs, and is a well-known Greek meze. You can serve this filling dip creamy (by using a blender) or chunky (served directly from the pot) depending on your liking. To give extra flair and flavor, serve your fava with a variety of side garnishes, such as diced red onions, feta cheese, capers, chopped parsley, Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, or anchovies. Fava goes great when dipped with crusty bread, or when eaten plain as a side dish.
Smooth, warm, delicious, and extremely healthy, fava invites you to embrace life. Whether you’re lucky enough to visit Santorini or not, this recipe will transport you to the wonderful tavernas of Santorini, or anywhere else in Greece. Enjoy fava in your home year-round from sunrise to sunset.
- 1 cup yellow split peas, rinsed
- 1 large red onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- Wash and rinse split peas in a colander.
- Place the peas, onions, garlic, bay leaves, and half the olive oil in a saucepan. Add enough water to cover the peas (about 4 cups) and bring to a boil. Skim away any foam that forms on the surface.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer, checking and stirring the peas occasionally. Add water if needed. Cook until the peas soften (about 30-45 minutes).
- When the split peas have softened, or when the peas begin to mash together, remove from heat and mix in the salt, pepper, and oregano. Remove the bay leaves.
- Transfer contents into a food processor (or you can use an immersion blender) and add lemon juice and the remaining olive oil. Blend or pulse to your desired texture. For a chunky fava, just serve from the pot. Season to taste.
- Serve with pita or dipping vegetables and drizzle with olive oil. Garnish with toppings of choice.
Santorini is also known for being the edge of a deep caldera, steep and moon-shaped, the remains of an ancient volcano. Some speculate it is where the Atlantis myth originated. I visited there a very long time ago, but didn’t have fava!
Yes Santorini has quite spectacular and rich in history–I love it there. Ah too bad you didn’t get the Fava there, it’s wonderful. You can also easily make it yourself to try!