Fava beans. Not so hard. Without chianti.

Despite an unfair reputation, fava beans are not so hard to prepare. Yes, this may be the only vegetable that must be peeled twice, but preparation goes very quickly with proper technique. First split the large fleshy pods by twisting or by judicious use of a thumbnail, and carefully remove each bean within. Blanch resulting beans in highly salted water for two minutes, then shock with cold water and drain. Now each bean must be peeled, but it’s quick work with just your fingers.

Favas are available only briefly in our climate, so jump on them while you can! These babies came from Pachamama Organic Farm.

Fava Beans with Pecorino

This quick salad is a riff on a simple dish I often make when fresh peas are available.

  1. 2 cups prepared fava beans (as above)
  2. 1/2 cup pecorino romano in a 1/4″ dice
  3. 2 Tb fresh lemon juice
  4. 1/4 tsp lemon zest
  5. 5 Tb extra virgin olive oil
  6. black pepper, to taste

Prepare a vinaigrette by whisking olive oil into the lemon juice and zest. Add black pepper to taste – I like quite a bit. Lemon makes for a lighter vinaigrette, but certainly adjust proportions to your taste. I find the pecorino to be salty enough alone, so I don’t add additional salt.

Toss favas and cheese, toss with vinaigrette and serve.

With apologies to Dr. Lector, serve with a crisp gruner veltliner, not a “big amarone” or even a “nice chianti.”


Pachamama Organic Farm

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2 Responses to “Fava beans. Not so hard. Without chianti.”

  1. oryoki Says:

    We pour a wonderful Veltliner at Colterra by the glass.

    2007 Hirsch Gruner “Veltliner #1″, Niederosterreich, Austria
    $9.00 crisp, medium+ acid, grapefruit, honeydew, mineral

    We don’t have fava beans on the recently changed menu after serving them previously.

    I’ll point out your article to Bradford and maybe he will use some fave beans from the Pachamama farm on some specials.

    We get a lot of our produce from Cure and Oxford farms. Our customers really love the produce from our own garden right off the best patio in Boulder County in our front yard.

  2. bcofresh Says:


    I love the ’07 Hirsch #1, note that you can find the slightly richer 2006 locally as well. I’m especially attracted to GVs (can’t bring myself to write “Gru Ve”) in liters with the beer bottle caps! Locally you can find Berger and H.u.M. Hofer, both are great and are also Terry Theise wines. A liter of Berger @ $15 is an astounding value – great with summer food, and I’d put it up against most any white 750 under $20 from anywhere.

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