For the most part I’m a lazy cook, which is why I don’t get along too well with fava beans.
If you have it in you to shuck the beans from the pod, simmer them briefly and then peel each and every single bean, more power to you. You are now ready to make some elegant little appetizer that will be gone in two bites, like this fava bean and arugula crostini or that fava and ricotta bruschetta. (That second recipe recommends having a friend do the work for you, which is at least a step in the right direction.)
If you don’t have it in you to do all that work, this recipe is for you. It neatly foists the labor of excavating the tender beans straight onto your guests, providing a lively to start to your dinner party as your guests roll up their sleeves and forge a camaraderie based on their mutual amazement at your laziness. Provide a tiny bowl of good salt for dipping the beans, napkins, and a bowl for discarded pods and bean skins.Continue reading →
I know I said that I find the task of preparing fava beans to be overly fussy, but I’ve found a way that makes it easy. Graciously agree to let a girlfriend come over on a Saturday to make lunch together, and hope that she arrives with a bright little bowl of favas that have already been shucked, boiled, and individually peeled. (Thanks, girlfriend!) If she goes on to introduce you to a gorgeous recipe like this one, that’s just icing on the cake.
This is the second fava recipe I’ve posted on this site and both of them are for bruschetta. (The other bruschetta topping is a rich fava and arugula pesto.) Is this a coincidence? I think not. Continue reading →
I love many vegetables. Most vegetables, even. But I do not love fava beans.
Sure, they’re the color of springtime. And at their best, they do taste like something that color green should taste. But they are so much work. (Every year around this time, someone acts like it’s a new idea to grill whole fava beans, but that can’t really work. Does that really work?)
So I only cook fava beans when they appear in my CSA box. One or two pounds can be manageable if you have half an hour to kill: string the pods and pull them open, push out the beans with your thumb, simmer them for a few minutes, drain and run them under cold water, then peel the bean-skin from each and every individual bean.
Then see if you find yourself admiring the fava’s color and flavor, or if you find yourself vowing to just steam some broccoli next time. If you forget your vow and find yourself with another pound of favas, though, this recipe is one of my favorites.