How to Cook Dried Green Peas: A Step-by-Step Guide

Dried green peas, also known as split peas, can make a great addition to any meal. They are simple to prepare and cook, and offer a healthy and hearty alternative to other starches or side dishes. With a few easy steps, you can have perfectly cooked dried green peas in minutes that you and your family can enjoy! Let’s take a look at the steps of how to cook dried green peas.

Preparing the Peas

Before cooking, you need to prepare the peas. Start by rinsing them thoroughly with cold water in a colander. This will get rid of any dirt or debris that might be in the peas. It is also important to pick through the peas at this time and remove any foreign objects that may have gotten mixed in. After rinsing, set the peas aside to allow them to drain.

Using Stovetop Method

Once the peas are prepped, stovetop cooking is your next step. For stovetop cooking, you will need a pot with a tight-fitting lid and two to three quarts of water per cup of dried green peas. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, then add the peas. Stir and allow them to return to a full boil. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot with the lid. Simmer the uncovered pot for 30-45 minutes or until the peas are tender.

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Boiling the Peas

If boiling is your preferred cooking method, bring two quarts of water per cup of dried green peas to a boil over high heat. Add the peas and stir, before allowing the water to return to a full boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan with a lid, and boil for 15-20 minutes or until the peas are tender.

Adding Seasonings

When the boiling is finished, you can season the peas as desired. Adding some salt, pepper, herbs, or spices are all classic options for seasoning dried green peas. If you desire, you can also add a pat of butter or some cream for added richness and flavor. Stir everything together and allow it to simmer until all the seasonings have blended properly.

Simmering the Peas

Once all the seasonings are blended, you can leave the peas to simmer over low heat until they reach the desired tenderness. Depending on how soft you prefer your peas, this could take anywhere from 10-30 minutes. Do not leave the pot uncovered during this process; as the peas cook, they will thicken and need to be stirred occasionally.

Cooking with a Pressure Cooker

If you want to speed up the cooking process, you can also try using a pressure cooker. Follow the manufacturers instructions for proper use if you decide to go down this route. Place two quarts of water in the pressure cooker for every cup of dried green peas, and add in some salt as well. Lock the lid into place and cook for five minutes or as directed by your manufacturer. When done cooking, let the pressure release naturally. Once it is done and safe to open, taste the peas and season as desired.

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Finishing Up and Serving

Finally, you will want to drain any remaining liquid before serving. To do this, place a colander in the sink and pour the cooked peas into it. Once drained, transfer them to a serving dish and serve warm. You can also save some to use later in other recipes.

Tips for Perfectly Cooked Dried Green Peas

  • Always rinse the peas before cooking them. Dirt, rocks, or other foreign objects can get mixed in with dried green peas.
  • Different cooking methods may require different amounts of liquid. For stovetop cooking, use two to three quarts of water for every cup of dried green peas; for boiling, use two quarts; for pressure cooking use enough water for the pressure cooker’s minimum fill line.
  • Using a timer will help ensure that the peas do not overcook. Keep an eye on them while they simmer and adjust the time accordingly.
  • Make sure to use a tight-fitting lid when simmering or boiling so that all of the steam does not escape.

Variations for Cooking Dried Green Peas

If you want to be creative with your cooked dried green peas, there are plenty of variations you can try! For example, if you’d like your peas to have a smoky flavor, try adding some smoked paprika when seasoning them. Or if you want to switch things up a bit, try adding a few crispy bacon bits or sautéed onion and garlic for extra flavor. The options are virtually limitless!

Cooking dried green peas is easy once you know how! Keep these steps and tips in mind next time you’re looking to make a batch of split peas, and you’ll have perfectly cooked dried green peas every time!

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