Ever wondered what in the dickens you’re supposed to do with fava beans?
Fava beans, like Brussels sprouts spent many years outside of culinary fashion, but no more, it seems. If you make a visit to any farmer market or restaurant that focuses on seasonal foods you can bank on seeing them from April ‘til early June.
I positively geek out on fava beans when they’re available. Like asparagus and green garlic they’re the heralds of springtime and their season is short. You can use the beans fresh or dried and the leaf of the plant makes an incredible salad when paired with croutons and a robust dressing like blue cheese.
So clear your schedule (they’re labor intensive) and try them a few different ways before the season is over.
Remove beans from pods
Plunge into boiling water for 3 minutes
Drain and place in an ice bath to shock the beans into keeping that pretty color
Pierce the outer skin of the bean (which is not tasty) and squeeze to release the bright green fava.
You can do pretty much anything with them after this. I like using the beans as a base for a pesto by pureeing with some water, olive oil, garlic (green, if you’ve got it) lemon, S & P. The pesto makes a great pasta sauce, pizza topping or last minute addition to risotto. Colin ditches the peas and adds favas to a pasta Carbonara.
Leave us a comment if you’ve got your own brilliant use for them!