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IrishCream

Fresh fava beans

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Hi, there. My family prepares fava stew in yogurt sauce all the time. It's one of my favorites!

There's one caveat, though. In the U.S., people like to find the largest pods, which would contain the largest beans, which are what everyone seems to want. If you're making fava stew, though, you want to find the immature "baby" pods (about half an inch or less in diameter, and fuzzy rather than smooth/shiny), which are young enough to remain edible. It's a good thing, because the pods you seek are the ones all the other shoppers will cast aside. :)

So, to prepare your beans, rinse them well. Remove the stem ends and try to get rid of the strings on the sides (just like you would with other beans). Chop the pods into 1" pieces.

Saute an onion in some olive oil until translucent. Add the fava bean pods and saute until soft. Do not salt until they have softened (otherwise, they'll remain tough). The beans will start to slip out of the pods, and the pods will be soft and floppy.

Meanwhile, make your yogurt sauce. Start with broth or stock (some make the dish with meat, so if you braised or simmered some stew meat/oxtails/shanks, just use the simmering liquid from that and add the meat later). Add your choice of the following (either individually or in combination): yogurt, yogurt cheese/labne/kefir, sour cream, buttermilk, milk, cream cheese, "jameed"/keshk (my favorite is either labne or sour cream, or cream cheese + yogurt). Season to taste -- don't forget the garlic. Add lemon juice to taste for yogurt-y flavor. Thicken with corn starch, if needed (if you used cream cheese, sour cream, or labne, you shouldn't need to thicken it). Smooth with a hand blender.

Add the sauce to the fava beans. If you've prepared meat, add it now. Simmer a little while longer. Serve with rice.

Enjoy!

P.S. I know some like to add chopped cilantro to the dish, but my family doesn't, and I've never tried adding cilantro. I'm sure it's good, but it's just not the way we make it. :)

P.P.S. DO NOT EAT this dish if you are taking an MAO inhibitor!!! (The pods -- and beans, to a lesser degree -- contain high amounts of levodopa, which can interact with MAOIs to cause excitability, nausea, psychosis, and a dangerously high fever.)

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I've been buying fava beans from the farmers market, and I'm getting a signifigant portion that turn out to be yellow when I shell them. One time, I think about a third of them turned out to be yellow vs. green. Are the yellow ones still okay to eat? And, how do I pick out which fava beans will be green vs. yellow?

I've tried asking the farmers selling them, but they're not much help- its always 'oh, they're all good..."

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I was more than a little surprised to find fresh fava beans at our COOP in Vermont the other day, and I have no idea what to do with them. Yes, I've looked onlie and have a few ideas - how do you like to cook them?

Thanks!


"Life itself is the proper binge" Julia Child

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shell them

boil them

eat them

or if you are high cuisine peel off the skin of the seed once cooked

Eat the seasonal treat as is, with a little butter melting

when you are bored with that you can puree, use in a stew, soup, etc etc etc

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Apparently if you vacuum-pack fresh favas, then freeze and thaw, it allows them to be easily peeled and tenderizes them just enough while still retaining the delicious raw fava-ness.

From Ideas in Food


--

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enjoy this fleeting seasonal treat in all things Portuguese of course. [favas are much loved in Portugal]

do try "Favas à Portuguesa" [however, this is how i make it...]

white wine, onion, garlic, lard [optional], tomato sauce, quality chouriço, fresh coriander.

fry garlic, onion in some olive oil. as soon as it smells aromatic add the lard stir all the while to prevent burning.

add sliced chouriço, tomato sauce, wine, bay leaves and let it boil gently for a short while. now add the favas and let cook until just tender.

remove the lard [if used] before serving. sprinkle with copious amounts of fresh coriander.

bom appetit!

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enjoy this fleeting seasonal treat in all things Portuguese of course.  [favas are much loved in Portugal]   

do try "Favas à Portuguesa" [however, this is how i make it...]

white wine, onion, garlic, lard [optional], tomato sauce, quality chouriço, fresh coriander.

fry garlic, onion in some olive oil. as soon as it smells aromatic add the lard stir all the while to prevent burning.

add sliced chouriço, tomato sauce, wine, bay leaves and let it boil gently for a short while. now add the favas and let cook until just tender. 

remove the lard [if used] before serving.  sprinkle with copious amounts of fresh coriander.

bom appetit!

The Greeks have a thing for favas, as well. Pureed favas are practically Hellenic mashed potatoes, sereved with capres and duced red onions.

But when I get my hands on some fresh ones, I'm going to put my whole family to work shelling, peeling (easiest if you blanche them first) blanching (if you haven't already) and tossed with fete cheese, olive oil and lemon. Spoon it over toasty bread, if you have a chance, and the beans are small enough.

So, are these greenhouse beans?


I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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Pod them, blanch for about a minute, and pod again. Puree the beans with good olive oil and fresh mint, add pecorino and you have maró - a Ligurian fava bean spread that is one of my favorite things to eat. Spread on bread or crackers, or thin with pasta cooking water and serve as a sauce for pasta.

See here.

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I can't wait for the first fava beans to show up! They are a bit more work than a sack of dry beans, but oh so worth it! I mostly just blanche or steam them, a bit of butter, some salt and pepper, that's it. Serve with a nice bbq steak, with pasta, with fish. They're quite possibly my favorite beans.

Also make great soups!

Oliver


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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All great ideas - thank you!


"Life itself is the proper binge" Julia Child

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I got some fava beans (I think) at my supermarket the other week. There weren't very many, so I blanched them, then tossed them whole with whole boiled new potatoes, poached chicken, and halved cherry tomatoes. I used a simple vinaigrette of lemon juice, nice olive oil, crushed garlic, salt and pepper to bring it all together. It was really a nice combination. My husband enjoyed it so much I bought some more - but then got too lazy to scrub new potatoes. So I boiled the latest batch, and had them whole, dipped in Hakata salt my friend brought back from Shikoku Island for me, along with small cups of cold sake. I love spring!

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found an old photo of broadbeans in my Flickr food/drink album. briefly blanched and tossed in the ikura.

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i thought the ikura was salty enough so i left the beans as is. besides, i like the pure tastes of both the beans and roe.

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I went to the farmers market for the first time in a while and everyone was pouncing on the favas. I joined the frenzy and grabbed a pound. Podded, blanched, skinned- oh my- the COLOR! - that green is the essence of spring. I mashed them with some roasted garlic, mint and lemon juice. Spread on some crusty bread slices = happy

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got the first batch yesterday at the market (and the first heirloom tomatoes!) and they were wonderful! I sauteed them in butter with some minced fresh baby garlic, s&p. Delicious, and yes, the color is fantastic! They are well worth the work, which is actually a nice relaxing thing to do sitting in the shade with some music on. Also had some tiny baby yellow squash and made some beef/pork hamburger patties on the grill, wonderful summer meal with delicious tomato salad (caprese) and fresh crunchy pan bigio bread.

Had not been to the market in a while, so much fresh wonderful stuff there now!


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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got the first batch yesterday at the market (and the first heirloom tomatoes!) and they were wonderful! I sauteed them in butter with some minced fresh baby garlic, s&p. Delicious, and yes, the color is fantastic! They are well worth the work, which is actually a nice relaxing thing to do sitting in the shade with some music on.

I have to agree that the prep is really not that onerous. Yes, there is lots of "waste", but the initial peeling is a breeze, and the second peeling after the blanch is nothing compared to peeling and de-veining shrimp which I have been doing a lot of. I am thinking of a fava party to introduce some friends to this treat. The act of working on them in a group would make the dishes even more special. I also think next time butter will be the fat of choice to accent the sweetness versus the olive oil I used that was in the roasted garlic. Butter and green garlic sounds like spring

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Saute 1/2 cup diced onions in 1/4 cup olive until slightly blond. Add fresh whole Fava beans (ends removed and snapped in half). Reduce heat and let the beans cook in their liquid (may have to cover). Season with salt and cook until the peels are tender. If water released by the beans evaporates too soon add water.

This dish in not about color. The beans will be grayish green. They will be delicious.

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Add fresh whole Fava beans (ends removed and snapped in half). Reduce heat and let the beans cook in their liquid (may have to cover). Season with salt and cook until the peels are tender. If water released by the beans evaporates too soon add water.

Are you talking beans in the pod? Or podded whole beans? Because this recipe sounds really nice, and I'm sitting on a stack of favas.

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I just posted a great corn and fava bean salad on my blog. It was a big hit at my place this weekend. Here's the recipe and photo!

Corn and Fava Bean Salad with Mint

1 1/2 lbs. fresh fava beans

Kernels from 1 medium ear of corn (3/4 – 1 c.)

3 scallions, white and light green parts sliced

1 T. chopped fresh mint

1 T. extra virgin olive oil

1 T. fresh lemon juice

Pinch salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Shell the beans – you will have about a scant cup. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the beans, cook for 2-2 minutes and drain. Rinse with cold water. Slip the beans out of their skin. This is easy if you tear a bit off the end and then squeeze lightly. Bring a smaller pan of water to a boil. Add the corn kernels and blanch for 1 minute (or a bit less if you have corn with very tender, small kernels.) Place the beans and corn in a bowl with the scallions and mint. Pour on the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and a bit of pepper. You can add extra lemon or mint to taste, but be judicious – you want to mostly taste the essence of the beans and corn. Stir to combine, and serve at room temperature.

optimized-img_9229.jpg

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