This basic method of cooking fava beans was taught to me by chef Gabriel Claycamp of Culinary Communion. When I was recently able to get ahold of fresh fava beans, I wanted to cook them in a way that highlighted the taste of the beans themselves, and here’s how Gabriel suggested I fix them. Although fresh fava beans are, as he said, about 70% waste (and the prep time is shelling and peeling), the remaining 30% after you’ve prepared and eaten them are *well* worth the effort! We loved them!
- First, shell the beans from the fava pods (I found it’s sometimes easier - especially if you're new to fava beans - to open the pods when you run the edge of a knife along the seam, cutting away the tough edge so that the pod halves come apart).
- In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil, then add salt – the amount depends on how much water you have, but it should be very salty, like seawater.
- In a bowl, combine ice and tap water to make ice water; set aside.
- Add the shelled beans to the boiling water and let cook for about 3 minutes, then remove from saucepan and immediately plunge into the ice water to halt the cooking.
- Let the beans cool, then peel the outer skin from each of them.
- Over medium heat in a skillet, melt together the butter and olive oil, then add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
- Add the peeled fava beans and sauté for about 5 to 7 minutes, or until they are done to your preference.
- Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper, serve, and enjoy!
- Note: in choosing your fava beans, get the pods that are firm and fresh looking; also, if you’re feeling silly, have these along with your favorite liver dish and a nice Chianti.
- Note 2: once you've made these basic fava beans, you can add other delicious items such as caramelized onions or fennel, chunky fresh tomatoes, and/or a bit of chopped proscuitto.
- Note 3: I asked Gabriel if favas could be frozen effectively, and he said that yes, you can shuck them and blanch them for 1 minute at most, then freeze them in a single layer on a sheet in the freezer before putting them into bags; great bright green color and no mushiness in texture; thaw, peel, and use as usual.
Just the directions you need to cook fava beans. Lots of prep time here for not a lot of finished product, but basic and tasty and really good for you.
Yum! Cooked on the short side 'cause we like our veggies that way.
My, these were good. We didn't have REALLY fresh liver, so I served with fresh grouper (it was still flopping) and a nice Sauvignon Blanc as we thought Chianti inappropriate for the fish. Hannibal and I enjoyed it all very much and we thank you for this easy recipe. I only wish we could get fresh fava beans more often.