Fava is a dish that to me epitomizes winter. I like to eat it with fresh, warm bread that is baked in our wooden oven. Bread made of sour yeast is my favorite. It is paradise to smell it coming out of the oven and then dip the bread in the creamy and tasty fava that is topped with my own olive oil.
My mother would cook fava on Saturdays. It was the day that she would ‘burn’ her oven! She would wake up very early to make the bread and bake it in the oven in our yard. That is the bread that we would eat with the best fava in the world. My father used to say: “That is better than meat.”
The best fava
On Santorini the volcanic soil along with the dry nights and sunny days produces what is believed to be the best fava in Greece. It comes from the plant Lathyrus clymenum, cultivated on the island of Santorini for the last 3,500 years. Together with the unique grapes native to the region it’s one of the oldest traditions of the Cyclades (additional info from Niki Tsekou).
I hope you will love fava as much as I do!
To make fava we use yellow split peas. Boil them in 1 liter of water together with the onions.
When ready, transfer the mixture to a food processor and mix until the peas become smooth and creamy, like a purée.
Serve the fava with the olive oil, a tablespoon of diced onion and some capers or chopped dill on top. We on Poros like to squeeze a lemon over it! Enjoy!