A vegetable with an edge: Sweet potato, baked split peas and rosemary stew

By baking sweet potatoes with split peas, this recipe goes against all the grain. The mushrooms add a subtle umami kick.


200g dry split peas, soak for at least 2 hours

800ml-1 litre (approx) vegetable stock

Salt and pepper

Oil, to fry

Finely chopped 1 large onion

Finely chop 1 large carrot

Finely chop 2 stalks celery leaves, with the stem,

1 Large leek, chopped lengthwise and roughly chopped

500g of button mushrooms thinly sliced

2 tbsp soy sauce or tamari

One large, chopped sprig fresh rosemary (or two heaped teaspoons dried), plus some extra for sprinkles

One small to medium sprig fresh thyme finely chopped (1 heaped teaspoon dried).

2 teaspoons dried oregano

4 cloves garlic chopped finely or crushed

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 medium sweet potatoes

Add a few dried chilli flakes to taste

  • Preheat the oven to 210C/ 190C fan/gas 6½. Put the chopped split peas and 750ml vegetable stock in a large pot. Then bring to boil. Once the mixture has boiled, reduce heat to simmer until the peas are tender. It should take approximately 20 minutes. After the meat is cooked, add salt and season to taste.
  • Place a little oil in a large saucepan. Heat on medium heat. Once the oil has melted, add your onions, carrots, celery, and leeks. Cook until tender and fragrant. Cook your mushrooms in 2 tablespoons soy sauce/tamari in a separate saucepan on a medium heat. They’ll start to soften and become a slightly darker brown. Set aside from the heat.
  • Add your onion, carrots, celery, and leek to the pot. Keep cooking for several more minutes. If the pan seems dry, add water. Add the balsamic vinegar to your pan once it is fragrant. Season with salt or pepper as needed.
  • Combine the onion, mushroom, and split pea mixture. Then, add 50ml more stock to a large casserole.
  • Prepare the sweet potatoes by washing them thoroughly. Next, use a knife, peeler, or mandoline to cut thin slices of it (no more than 1cm).
  • Spread your sweet potato mixture on top. Season again with salt, pepper, and rosemary.
  • Place the mixture on a middle rack of your oven and bake it for 40-50 minutes. Once the liquid has evaporated, the split peas should become slightly softer. Once the liquid has evaporated, the potato skins will turn golden brown. You can use the remainder of your stock (approx 200ml) to add gradually to the dish if it’s starting to look a little dry, and to prevent the potatoes on top from burning.
  • Take the casserole out of the oven. Let it rest for several minutes before you serve.