You know for sure that spring has arrived when you see the first fava beans at the market. They are a favorite here at The Cook's Atelier and we love them for their bright green color and marshy flavor. They make their way in salads or mashed on crusty bread with a drizzle of fruity olive oil and sprinkling of our favorite fleur de sel. Heaven.
We have some very excited projects in the works here at The Cook's Atelier and are busting at the seams in anticaption of sharing all the details. Soon, I promise, soon.
Fava bean salad with fennel and mint
8 to 10 pounds fresh young fava beans in the pod (10 pounds will yield about 6 cups of beans)
3 fennel bulbs, thinly sliced
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fruity extra-virgin olive oil
1 handful of mint leaves
1 handful of parsley leaves
2 lemons, one sliced the other cut in half
Shuck the fava beans from their pods Blanche the beans in salted boiling water for about 2 minutes. Plunge them into a bowl of ice water to cool them and preserve their color. Once cool enough to handle, pop the beans out of their grey-green skin to release the bright green bean.
Trim and wash the fennel.
When you are ready to make the salad, slice the fennel into very thin slices (a mandoline works well for this task) and put them in a bowl. Add the fava beans, scallions and a good sprinkling of sea salt anda few grinds of black pepper. Drizzle generously with fruity olive oil to coat. Add the mint, parsley, lemon slices and mizuna leaves, then squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the salad. Toss well with your hands, then taste and correct the seasoning. Serve immediately.