If you want to know how to prepare grass pea then the first stage, once you’ve ‘harvested’ your peas, will be to shell them.
Shelling sounds like ‘hard work’ but it is not as hard as it looks !
The starting point is to decide how many peas or flour you will need for your recipes – and then simply work back !
- For example 4 ounces of shelled peas should take less than 15 minutes.
- Or you will get about 1 to 1.5 cups of flour from 1 cup of shelled peas.
Whether you want to shell peas, a grass pea or kapucijners the process is the same. There is a video on our kapucijner recipe page.
How to prepare grass pea
There are 2 options you could use :
- Shelled Grass Peas as an ingredient
- Making flour from Grass Peas
Please note that grass pea flour is very sought after – as it’s an ingredient in many great meals and once you know how to prepare grass pea then meals are not that difficult to make.
How to Shell Grass Pea as an ingredient
If you want to use grass peas as a ‘bean’ in an ingredient it is very important to soak it in water.
Maltagliati with grass peas and pumpkin
(Serves 4 people)
You will need :
- 250 g egg noodles Maltagliati “La Campofilone”
- 250 g of grass peas “Agrirape”
- 100 g pumpkin
- 3 amaretti
- 50 g Parmigiano Reggiano
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil Gran Cru “Frantoio Franci”
- 30 g Rigatino “Cinta di Guido”
- Salt and pepper
Wash the grass peas and soak them overnight in 2 liters of water. Cook the grass peas the next day for 2 hours. Sauté the Rigatino with rosemary and then add the peas. Cook the Maltagliati al dente and add them to the sauce. Season with salt and pepper.
Steam cook the pumpkin and pass it through a sieve. Now add the crumbled amaretti and the grated Parmesan. If necessary, add a little hot water, stir the peas until you have a creamy sauce. Pour over the pasta.
Recommended wine: Donna Olimpia “Bolgheri”
Grow the grass peas in your vegetable garden or allotment. Other ingredients from italian products
Making flour at home is fun & relatively easy !
Grass peas are great but practically anything (grains, seeds, nuts, beans) can be turned into flour
OK you can always use the method in places where there is no electricity. (grinding it by hand) but it’s a lot easier to simply through your grass peas into a blender/food processor or coffee grinder and let it do the work for you. (or you can always get a specialised flour mill like the one shown)
Simply fill your grinder about halfway full and grind away. Stop after about 30 seconds, turn it off and stir and then blend some more.
(coffee grinders do work, but you will get finer flower with a proper blender)
How to use grass pea flower
There are many different dishes made from grass pea flower – but the best known ones are the ‘Gachas’ from Spain. The gachas used to be considered an unrefined rural dish, often seen as the food of shepherds, farmers and itinerant laborers. A gacha dish is generally eaten directly out of the pan it is cooked in – using either a spoon or a simple slice of bread – and usually eaten immediately after removing it from the fire.. (Be careful not to burn your lips or tongue !)
However they are making a real comeback in many ‘upmarket’ trendy restaurants.
If you can make one you will be at the sharp end of cooking. We especially like this recipe :
To make it you will need :
- Grass Pea flour
- fresh streaked pork fat
- pork liver
- olive oil
- red pepper
How to Make Gachas manchegas
It will take about 1 hour to prepare.. Chop the pork fat, garlic and pork liver into pieces and add to a frying pan with hot oil. simply browned. Remove from the frying pan leaving the fat.
Add a tablespoon of flour per person and fry lightly for about 3 minutes. Add one teaspoon per person of red pepper. Fry gently for 20 seconds and add 200 c.c. of water for every tablespoon of the grass pea flour you have added.
Add the salt, a bit of oregano and caraway. Leave everything cooking until the mixture is thick and the fat comes to the surface, stirring from time to time.
How to serve…
Now you know how to prepare grass pea…
Don’t forget that a gacha dish is generally eaten directly out of the pan it is cooked in – with the guests situated around it, dipping bread on it.