Electronic Design

What's All This Recipe Engineering Stuff, Anyhow? (Part 2)

Several people have asked me, "What the heck is 'Pease Porridge?' Is it a kind of oatmeal?" Not at all. Oats have nothing to do with it. Every general cookbook has a recipe or two for pea soup with ham. Here is a delightful recipe for a Pease Porridge, but without ham or pork. This old recipe for Scotch

Broth/Pease Porridge was contributed by Dottie Atwood and Lurana Cook, 2001:

Simmer 3/4 lb or more of lamb necks in 5 cups of water. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook about 1 hour. Pick over meat, remove bones, cool broth, and skim off fat. Soak 3/4 cup dried green split peas and 1/4 cup barley in 2 cups of water while meat is cooking. Then add to broth and meat. Simmer 30 to 60 minutes, or until peas and barley are done.

Add 1/2 bay leaf, 1/8 teaspoon rosemary and thyme, 2 chopped carrots, 3 chopped onions, and 3 chopped celery stalks. (Parsley is good, too.) Simmer 30 minutes or until vegetables are done. Adjust salt and pepper. It's a great variation on Pease Porridge!


By Dorothy D. Blair, My Mountain Memory Cookbook, Barbourville, Kentucky, ~1954
See associated figure.

  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 cup finely chopped nuts—walnuts?
  • 2 1/2 cups crushed vanilla wafers (~9 oz.)
  • (1 cup shredded coconut—optional)
  • Mix ingredients in bowl.
  • Add 3 tablespoons Karo Syrup
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • Mix well with hands and/or spoon.
  • Shape into ~3/4-in. diameter balls, using your palms.
  • Roll in XXX sugar (with cocoa added as an option).
  • Best when aged.

Transcribed by R.A. Pease, April 2002.

I have never made the option with coconut, but I often make a double batch, with 1/8 cup cocoa added for one batch, for a chocolate version. I am sure this could be made with rum, but it tastes wonderful with bourbon. I never drink bourbon, but it is just right in this recipe. Bourbon lovers may prefer to omit the Karo Syrup, chopped nuts, vanilla wafers, and confectioner's sugar.

Comments invited!

[email protected] —or:
Mail Stop D2597A, National Semiconductor
P.O. Box 58090, Santa Clara, CA 95052-8090


Hi Bob: That was a nice surprise to see your Pease Porridge moved to the front of the magazine. Now I don't have to flip to the back pages first.

Pease: Well, I can live with that. But maybe this is some trick to get people who start reading from the back of the book to read the whole book before they find me. When they learn that trick, then the magazine will move me around! Best regards.

Bob Pease obtained a BSEE from MIT in 1961 and is staff scientist at National Semiconductor Corp., Santa Clara, Calif.

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