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Local products

Split peas

For the locals, split peas are as significant as bread. They are used nowadays, as in the past, in many recipies. The extremely savory split peas of Santorini, with their rich and sweet taste, come from a variety of pulse called Lathyrus clymenous, or L. alatus. According to archaeologists, this variety exists on the island since 1500 BC. It has been recognized among the nuts discovered in the settlement dating back to the Bronze Age in Akrotiri.
In the past due to a small number of farmlands, they used to cultivate fava together with the vines in order to gain larger profits. Fava beans become mushed and are served with capers or "paired" with onions. You can taste it in various recipies at the restaurants of the island.

Traditional farming: For the cultivation of fava beans in the volcanic land of the island the farmer has no specific preparations to do. He plants on the 21st of December (miss-Eleoussa's). Planting is a two way process:

  • The farmer sows the seed.
  • Lays the seeds within small pits made with a pickaxe.

Fava starts blossoming with the "louvi" (flower) in April. Next the "louvi" dries out and the seed emerges. The plant's enemies during that time are the hot sun and the "vouvala", an insect eating it. It needs watering and a little sun light. In early May fava on the plant has dried out. It is collected in the wee hours of the day, bundled up and then delivered to the "gaidourolates" (mule drivers) who are paid in straw. The latter's job is to take the beans to the field for threshing. After the threshing he separates the straw from the fava beans. Next he winnows using the "dichali" (pickaxe). A breeze is necessary to help the situation. His job ends here. The farmer next takes the fava beans and puts them in a barrel with drugs. He preserves them there for about a year. When the right time has come the peeling takes place. They wet the fava beans and leave them under the sun.
Next is the milling done in two ways:

  • Using the old hand mill. The milling product is put in "doumbanistra" and then cleaned.
  • Using an electric cutting machine. On top it has a funnel where the fava is thrown. It finally ends up peeled and cut through a tube.

Extract from Fira's High School assignment in Santorini of the past. Proffessor in charge: Christopher Mindrinos.

Γαστρονομία - προϊόντα - φάβα
Γαστρονομία - προϊόντα - φάβα

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