Pease Porridge

This recipe is very simple, yet nutritious and filling. When my brother and I were growing up my Mom used to make us a slightly different version with yellow peas and a dab of bacon. We called it “Dragon Soup” because it was SO hot when we were eating it we used to pretend that the steam was hot Dragon’s breath.  The version below is made with dried green peas and has a slightly different flavour.

Lentils  have been found on archaeological dig sites dating back approx. 8,000 years.  A plentiful source of protein, lentils have graced the tables of peasants and Royalty alike. According to historical records Catholics who could not afford fish during the season of Lent often substituted lentils. Lentils were so popular among the lower class that they were often the only source of food. So popular in England a rhyme regarding the hardy lentil dish became a popular hand clapping game among children. The origins of this rhyme are unknown. The rhyme refers to a type of porridge made from peas, pease pudding, also known as pease pottage. The earliest version of Pease Porridge Hot is a riddle found in John Newbery’s Mother Goose’s Melody circa. 1760.

Pease Porridge hot,
Pease Porridge cold,
Pease Porridge in the Pot,
Nine Days old,
Spell me that in four Letters?
I will, T-H-A-T

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes

Ingredients

2 cups dried green split peas, rinsed and picked over
1/2 cups water
salt to taste
butter
pepper

Directions

Add all ingredients except butter to the pot. Bring to a bowl and then reduce heat to a simmer. Allow to cook until peas are soft and mushy and peas resemble porridge. Serve with a dollop of butter or a touch of fresh cream.

Yield 4 to 6 servings

FOOTNOTE: You can change up this recipe by using yellow split peas and adding some chopped cooked bacon for extra flavour.