This is a ladder of young favas nearly ready for harvest.
These are Fava Beans still in the pod.
Fava Bean Goat Cheese Pizza. recipe below
How to store fresh fava beans: store them in a bag in the fridge. If space is a problem: remove the beans from the pods and store them in a bag or covered bowl for up to one day. If you're then shelling the beans: use them right away. Great series of photos on how to prepare your fresh favas from About.com.
Chef Jonathan Miller YouTubing How to Prepare Fresh Fava Beans
Julia's Fava Bean Goat Cheese Pizza (photo above right)1 empty Vicolo pizza crust from freezer; then a layer of thinly sliced parmesan (done with potato peeler); then a thick layer of peeled favas; then hard-to-see-here paper-thin sliced garlic cloves (I did this with a mandolin); then a layer of fresh goat cheese. then baked. dinner's done! and the favas are used and out of the fridge: they take up space!
Grilled Fava Beans as told to Andy by Bruce Hill of Bix in San Francisco
The easiest way to prepare favas is to grill them. The heat of the coals will pop the pods open and split the hulls that wrap each bean. Remove the beans with your fingers and they're ready. If there's a bit of char on your fingers from plucking out the beans from the grilled pods, it only helps the flavor.
Julia's Desperation Favas
This works best with freshly picked young fava beans.
1. Have children, guests, or domestic partners remove fava beans from pods.
2. After taking the beans out of the pod but BEFORE removing the skin, saute the beans with garlic, olive oil and salt. The skins come half off and the whole thing can be eaten hot over rice, noodles, as a side dish or as a salad if chilled. Enjoy!
Our Favorite Fava Beans from Julia and Andy
These two recipes are similar to the desperation favas, above, but these can also be used with larger fava beans, or ones that have already been stored a few days since harvest.
2 pound favas, taken out of the pods
1-4 cloves of garlic, chopped AND/OR:
1/2 cup onions, chopped
S & P The simplest version: sauté the favas with the garlic in the heated oil. the shells will come off in the pan, they are a lighter green, and the whole thing can be eaten like that. (Season with S & P) Version #2: Put the light green favas (that have been removed from the pod) into boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Remove immediately, rinse in cold water. Take the outer shell off each fava bean, so that you have just the bright emerald green bean. Then cook just the inner brighter green beans in the heated oil with the garlic for 2-3 minutes, then eat. We like both versions, and which one we do depends on if we have guests or willing children to help in the extra step of Version #2.
Fava Bean/Couscous Salad (you can adapt the vegetables to whatever you have on hand....)
-1 cup raw couscous (Trader Joe's has whole wheat...) Cooked according
to package intructions. (This is easy! Bring one cup water with a bit of
butter or oil and a pinch of salt to a boil. Turn off heat and stir in 1
cup raw couscous and stir up well. Put a lid on and set the timer for 5
minutes. Fluff couscous and you're ready to go.)
-1 small bowl or more shelled, blanched favas (the bright green ones)
-3 green onions, chopped
-large handful orach leaves, thinly sliced (spinach works well if you don't have orach)
-Green Garlic Dressing
Mix all ingredients above, making sure you don't put in too much dressing. Eat!
Green Garlic Dressing
1-3 stalks roughly chopped green garlic, tough end leaves discarded
1/3 cup rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon honey
1/3 cup olive oil
S & P
Whirl all in a blender. Can be used as a salad dressing or marinade.
Ravioli with Favas from Chef Jonathan Miller
This is for the old hat. For those of you who prefer to dress up your beans, here is a ravioli stuffing for you that is dynamite. Serve the ravioli with a little cream sauce or bechamel infused with marjoram and parsley. Delicious.
3 lb favas
3/4 c bread crumbs, homemade
1/4 c mascarpone
Prepare the fava beans by shelling them, then blanching the beans, then peeling them. You should have about 1 1/2 cups. Put them in a food processor with the bread crumbs and process until it all comes together. Add the mascarpone and process until smooth. Season with salt and make sure they taste good. Use this filling to fill ravioli or agnolotti. Cook those and serve them with cream infused with a couple simple, fresh herbs, or even with a salted and melted butter and parsley. Delicious!
Fresh Fava Bean Salad with Sherry Vinaigrette
adapted from Mediterranean Fresh, by Joyce Goldstein
3 cups shelled, fresh fava beans (about 3 pounds in the pod)
½ cup Sherry Vinaigrette
1 large head romaine lettuce, or other lettuce, shredded
3 Tablespoons chopped mint
2 spring onions, chopped (white and light green parts)
½ cup slivered Serrano ham (similar to prosciutto, you can use that instead, or leave it out altogether)
Cook the favas in boiling salted water for 2 minutes. Drain an drefresh in cold water. Using your fingers, carefully remove the outer peel from each bean. Listen to the radio or enlist help, and keep in mind the fava beans are only here in spring.
Place the peeled favas in a salad bowl. Dress them with half the vinaigrette and let them marinate for about 30 minutes.
When ready to serve, toss the lettuce, mint, and spring onions with the rest of the dressing and place on a serving platter. Top with the favas and the ham.
adapted from Mediterranean Fresh, by Joyce Goldstein
¼ cup sherry vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
S & P to taste
½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more to taste
Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl.
Fava Beans with Lemon and Parsley
from Chef Jonathan Miller
For those of you with children, I would encourage you to think of them as a captive labor force. Andy gave me a bag of favas yesterday for this newsletter, and as soon as my daughter came home from school I told her, "The favas are first, then the homework!" Ainsley is a reliable and cheerful helper most of the time, but even she had to groan a few times during the second round of peeling! "It'll be worth every minute once you taste the end result," I told her. She agreed that it might be, if only her brother were made to help. Alas, he was napping! I'm pretty sure these fava beans tasted even better to me since I didn't actually do all the shelling and peeling!
3# fava beans
peel from 1 lemon
1-2 T chopped parsley
Shell the favas. In boiling water, blanch the beans for about 30 seconds. Drain and cool, then peel the skins off, keeping the bright green, sweet bean.
Heat a small skillet and add a little olive oil. Add the beans and warm gently, then add the lemon peel. Warm gently for just a minute or so, then remove from heat, fold in the parsley and a little salt to taste. Serve warm.
* Variations: favas are super versatile, and can be used almost anywhere. At three pounds, this isn't enough to do something super fancy, like make a fava puree for agnolotti or ravioli, but the beans can be served in a simple saute, like above, or added to vegetable ragouts, soups, or as the base for serving some flesh. This recipe is a simple saute - vary it by adding a minced shallot for richness and depth; include a fancy wild mushroom like trumpets, or use truffle oil instead of lemon; mix in some other typical spring vegetables for a truly seasonal treat: asparagus, morels, snap peas are a delicious combination here. Keep it simple, though, I'd say. These are special little butter balls!
Fava Bean and Pancetta Salad
3 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
7 oz. sliced pancetta, coarsely shredded
4 cups shelled fava beans
1 medium-sized white fleshed onion, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
1 cup of parsley leaves
3 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Heat the oil in deep frying pan and add the pancetta. Cook over high heat until it begins to crisp, then add the beans and saute until the skins start to burst, stirring gently every few seconds. Add the onion and garlic and cook for another minute, stirring well. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley. Just before serving, mix the vinegar through the salad and grind some black pepper over it.
Fava and Fresh ricotta Bruschetta
Recipe from Lou Bustamonte
All I did was cook the favas in low heat in a tiny bit of water, peeled them, and sprinkled them on top of some olive oil and garlic brushed toasted Acme bread that had a nice helping of farm fresh ricotta. I added a little salt and pepper, and ate. Amazing.
Roman-Style Raw Fava Beans, Scamorza(or Smoked Mozzarella), and Fresh
Onion Antipasto di Fave e Cipolla Fresca
from Verdura by Vivana La Place
A springtime antipasto of raw fava beans and new onions. Eating tender fava beans is a special treat. Eat them unpeeled if you enjoy the refreshing bitter edge of the peel, or peel them first for a sweeter flavor. Serve this dish with crusty breadsticks, a sturdy country loaf, or black pepper taralli, a type of pretzel found in Italian specialty markets, and company with a pitcher of cool dry wine.
2 pounds fava beans, unshelled weight
a few small lettuce leaves
3 scallions or 1 small fresh onion, thinly sliced
1 pound scamorza cheese, sliced (substitute smoked mozzarella)
Basket of bread sticks, black pepper taralli, or bread
Shell the favas and mound in the center of a platter. Surround with the lettuce leaves and scatter the onions over the top. Arrange slices of the cheese around the edge of the platter. Serve with the bread.
Fava and Crab Risotto
from the LA Times Food Section
2 pounds fava beans, in pods
3 Tablespoons butter
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 cup arborio or other short grained rice
grated peel of 1 lemon
1 sprig plus 4 leaves mint
5 to 6 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup crab meat
shredded fresh mint leaves
Shuck fava beans. Cook beans in pot of boiling salted water 2 minutes, then drain. Place immediately in ice water to stop cooking and peel all but 16 to 20 beans. Set aside.
Melt butter in heavy saute pan. Add onion and stir until onion is soft. Add rice and stir until rice is opaque, about 1 minute. Stir in lemon zest.
Add mint sprig to vegetable broth in saucepan, bring to a boil, then keep at a low simmer. Add 1 to 1 ½ cups broth to rice and cook, stirring constantly, until broth is absorbed by rice. Continue adding broth in this manner, until rice is chewy but tender, about 18 minutes. Mixture should be rather soupy. Add peeled fava beans and keep cooking, stirring, 2‑3 more minutes.
Heat enough oil for frying in skillet. Quickly deep fry reserved unpeeled favas until shells brown and burst, about 30 seconds.
Serve risotto in bowls. Garnish with crab, shredded mint leaves and fried favas.
Minestrone with Fava Beans
2 cups shelled fava beans
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped flat‑leaf parsley
1 carrot, coarsely chopped
1 cup coarsely chopped tomatoes
5 cups water
1/4 cup rice
2 cups chopped spinach
~Cook fava beans in pot of boiling salted water two minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water.
~Remove outer skins, discard and reserve beans.
~Heat olive oil in soup pot over moderate heat.
~Add onion and celery and saute until onion begins to brown, seven to 10 minutes.
~Add parsley, carrot and tomatoes and cook, stirring, several minutes. Add water and peeled beans, cover and cook over low to moderate heat until beans are tender, about 50 minutes.
~Add rice, cover and cook 10 more minutes. Add spinach, cover and cook over low heat until rice is tender, about 10 to 12 minutes.
~Season to taste with salt and serve hot.
Makes 4 to 6 servings. Bon Appétit
Each serving contains about: 384 calories; 126 milligrams sodium; 0 cholesterol; 8 grams fat
Umbrian Fava Bean Stew (Scafata)
This recipe is about as simple as spring cooking gets. It's adapted from Antonella Santolini's La Cucina Delle Regioni D'Italia: Umbria The name comes from the Umbrian word for the hull of the beans.
Cook oil, beans, onion, fennel, carrot and chard over low heat in medium saucepan. When beans are quite tender, after about 45 minutes, add tomatoes and cook for another 25 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.