JOANNA'S FOOD: family cooking, from scratch, every day

Monday, July 21, 2008

Stewed broad beans

I've been podding broad beans at least twice a week for a couple of months now - and then boiling them and eating them plain. Love them. Last night, we had visitors, and plain broad beans suddenly seemed too plain. This Patience Gray recipe could be a meal in itself. Delicious and quick - if you don't count the time you spend podding the beans and then double podding the huge ones.

Fabulous. I used a red onion, paper-thin Parma ham, forgot to add any herbs. Still really delicious. Five minutes' cooking time. (Much longer podding time, but that was sociable.) This will be my summer staple. From Apulia.

Fave fresche in stufa When the beans are larger (older), husk them and pinch off their outer skins, no longer green but creamy white. Slice up a sweet white onion, put the slices in an earthenware pot (or enamelled pan) in a little olive oil, and, before they begin to brown, put in some strips neatly cut from a slice of prosciutto crudo (not paper thin), or, failing that, pancetta (salt belly of pork), both fat and lean, and brown them. Add the washed beans, salt and pepper, and some chopped mint or coriander leaves or fronds of dill. If the beans seem to be drying before they are tender, add a very little chicken stock. (A fresh green chilli pepper, seeded, is sometimes sliced and simmered in the oil with the sliced onion.)

from Patience Gray's Honey from a Weed


Sue said...

I love broad beans - probably my favourite vegetable. And I find you have to grow them yourself - here in NZ you can only ever buy huge ones, even at the Farmer's Market (and they are so much nicer when they are younger and smaller).
I'll definitely try this recipe!

friary said...

Broad beans are delicious but it's podding them I can't abide! That's why I only grow a few meals worth of early BBs and pick then young so I don't have to double pod. I often serve them as a side with a parsley pesto and fresh garlic tossed in.

David Hall said...

Aren't they just the best vegetable? I change with the seasons mind, but loving broad beans this year. Delish recipe.


Laurie Constantino said...

Honey from a Weed is such a great book, though I haven't looked at it in years. You've inspired me to read it again - thanks! I do love fava beans; the first flowers opened on ours today. I can't wait!

Ed Bruske said...

Second that emotion on the broad beans (favas here). Seems like ages ago we harvested ours and likewise devoured them very simply. It's so hot in Washington, they don't last very far into the spring.