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 Post subject: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:30 am 
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Brain Made of Raw Seitan
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I made the smokey split pea soup from AFR for lunch. It's delicious, but the split peas didn't break down at all. They were definitely well softened after the 40 minutes of simmering specified in the recipe, but they were still pea-shaped. I ended up cooking the soup for a whole hour, but I'm still eating whole peas instead of creamy mush. It's tasty, but not what I was expecting.

I've had this problem with other recipes too, and the split peas will eventually break down, after they have been cooked for 1.5-2 hours, but I didn't want to wait for my lunch that long. Maybe I'll get out my immersion blender and smooth out the soup that way.

The peas have been in my pantry for 6 months or so, but that shouldn't make them super dry or hard right? Is there a secret to getting split peas to break down faster? Does my grocery store stock superannuated legumes? The brown lentils I buy from them also take almost an hour to get soft and done.

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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:47 am 
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Your grocery store must buy really old beans. Are you boiling then simmering? The only thing you can do to shorten the time is soak but peas generally don't need to be soaked.

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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 7:03 am 
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Yeah, I'll try soaking them next time, if I remember. Otherwise it's whole peas or immersion blender for me. Next time I need new peas, I'll try getting them from an ethnic store and not from the supermarket. They have a higher legume turnover, so the things don't hang out on their shelves for who knows how long.

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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:01 am 
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It could be related to your water hardness. A higher mineral content in water will slow cooking time. You could try cooking your legumes in distilled/filtered water instead of tap. Just be sure you're not using spring/mineral water, because that will likely be very hard!

Adding salt during cooking can also slow cooking time as it slows water absorption. Just add salt after cooking.


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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:46 am 
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Not NOT A Furry
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Location: Zagreb, Croatia
I soak them. I use filtered water. They stay al dente any way, unless I use my pressure cooker. So I use it, it takes 10-25 minutes (depending on the working pressure).


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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:11 am 
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I make yellow split peas a lot for ethiopian dishes, and I've found that in order to get them mushy I have to soak them for about four hours, then boil them for another two.

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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:49 am 
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annamal wrote:
It could be related to your water hardness. A higher mineral content in water will slow cooking time.


Interesting. The water is quite hard here in the Netherlands, and I know it can be pretty hard in the Great Lakes area where dakini is. Wonder how it is in Croatia.

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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:59 am 
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I remember my mom saying she always soaks split peas before making soup. I made some without soaking and ended up using an imersion blender to make it creamier. The picture in the cookbook showed whole split peas, so that must be common.


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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:26 am 
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I love yellow split peas for soup. I soak them beforehand. The recipe I use calls for a long cooking time of 2-3 hours and they do break down and become creamy and nice. I've never had any luck with shorter cooking times. The split peas always stay kind of crunchy.


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 Post subject: Re: Split peas not breaking down
PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 11:04 am 
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lepelaar wrote:
annamal wrote:
It could be related to your water hardness. A higher mineral content in water will slow cooking time.


Interesting. The water is quite hard here in the Netherlands, and I know it can be pretty hard in the Great Lakes area where dakini is. Wonder how it is in Croatia.


It's very hard where I live. I use Brita Maxtra, one filter is supposed to last for a month, but sometimes those minerals pass through it even before, and I get limescale in my water boiler.

Before I bought my pressure cooker, I had to boil (soaked) beans for 3 hours. Soya beans took even longer. After boiling soaked split peas for over an hour, they were still al dente, so I decided to always use pressure cooker.

I like this split pea soup:
http://gormandizewithus.blogspot.com.au ... stard.html


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