Saturday, March 21, 2009

Fava Beans

Suddenly, the fava beans are ready to harvest, at least it seems sudden, since I've been away in San Antonio for a couple of days.

I harvested a mixture of Egyptian fava beans and Super-agua-dulce (from Italy) this evening and prepared them as follows:

  • Pick, shell, and peel beans
  • Boil in water until tender
  • Toss with olive oil, lemon juice, chopped parsley, chopped chives
  • Salt to taste
They were heavenly! It's amazing how the flavors of these ingredients blend -- you'd swear there was meat and cheese in there somewhere! I don't know whether favas from a grocery store would be as good. I've never bought any and never eaten dried ones from the garden, so I have no idea what they're like other than freshly picked.

Spinach, also from the garden, was the perfect accompaniment. The meal took about 10 minutes to prepare once the beans were shelled and peeled. Peeling fava beans is a nuisance. But it's not so bad, really. In fact, shelling and peeling fava beans while sitting on the kitchen step looking over the herb and flower garden is downright therateuptic. Sitting there, listening to a flock of grackles who'd stop by to visit, I could view the hectic week I had at work from afar, like a distant memory of a book I read once, a long time ago.


  1. You know, I feel the same when I peel beans. I loved to do it in my previous life, in Russia,with my Mom. It was so relaxing... I think it's similar, in certain extent, to knitting - monotonic movements calm you down..
    I love to do it now, too, in my WA garden. I will try your recepie, it should be yummy, thanks!

  2. Hm, looks so Hungarian, at least the colours.
    Have a nice day.

  3. I'm looking for planting information for Fava beans in Lockhart & Kyle TX. I haven't found any yet. Can you help? Thanks

  4. Hello Anonymous, now is a good time of year to plant favas, but don't plant all your seeds at one time. If there is a hard frost, the plants will be damaged or maybe even killed. I like to plant some now and be ready to plant again in very early spring if the ones I plant now are killed by frost. In a normal winter, though, the plants will come back, even if they suffer some frost damage, and you'll be harvesting beans by February.

    You can choose among several different Italian varieties on this website: (Italian Garden Seeds & Tools)

    One of my favorites is the Super Aguadulce.