Patience is a virtue. Supposedly.
But honestly, a growling stomach breeds impatience. And I become much less virtuous. However, some things are definitely worth the wait. Buttery puff pastry. Rich chocolate souffle. Moist smoked brisket. Fava beans?
Oh. Yes. Tender and a little sweet. Unfortunately, they can only be found a couple months out of the year. Once spotted, I snatch them up like Manolos at a sample sale.
This is when your patience kicks in. There are TWO rounds of shelling involved before you can reach the sweet bright green morsels hidden inside. Luckily, that is the only detour to pure deliciousness, as they require little dressing up. And that definitely puts a big smile on my face.
A simple vinaigrette of garlic and chile. Pecorino. A little marinating. Good eatin’!
Favas and Pecorino Salad Recipe
3 lbs fava pods (which will yield about 1 1/2 c cleaned fava beans)
1/3 c Pecorino Romano, in 1/4″ cubes
1 clove garlic, grated (or minced)
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
How to buy favas
Favas come in large pods between 5 and 10 inches long. The pods should be green, without black marks, and semi-firm. You should be able to feel the firm beans inside. I prefer to get medium to large pods, as peeling minuscule beans makes my head hurt.
How to clean favas
In a 2 qt pot, boil water with good pinch of salt. Fill a bowl with ice water. While water is boiling, remove the beans from the pods. Drop beans into the boiling water for 1m. Scoop them out and immediately drop into the ice water. This shocks the beans into submission to prevent overcooking. Once cool, peel off a piece of the outer skin at the end of each bean, and squeeze them out of their shell
Combine beans and Pecorino in a container with a lid. Whisk together garlic, chile, salt, red wine vinegar and olive oil. Pour dressing over the beans and cheese, gently toss to combine. Let sit for 1 hour to marinate. EAT.