Fava Bean and Cherry Salad
I first tasted fava beans a few days ago. I’m not sure how I managed to miss them until now, but I did. But now that I know how creamy they are, how fresh green and buttery in texture, I will be sure not to miss them again!
Preparing fava beans to be cooked is a two step process, one that I imagine would be most pleasant done with a group of friends sitting in rocking chairs out on the front porch (or here in Brooklyn, crowded together out on the front stoop).
First, you have to open up the pods and remove the beans. Next, you have to peel the thick skin from each bean. You can blanch them first if you like, but I didn’t, since they came off fairly easily without. It helps to have nails that can pierce the skin.
The flavor combination works well – it’s a great example of the adage, ‘Things that grow together, go together!’ This time of year, I become very brave, figuring that anything fresh and beautiful I find at the market will meld together with whatever else catches my eye. It tends to work out.
I don’t plan to bust out the grill until next weekend, but we have finally started eating dinner out in the backyard, at least. Dave pulls out the big photography lamp that we like to call ‘the sun’ and sets it up out back, running the power cord in through the window, to light our late night dinners in the summer.
The salad is simple:
Saute your fava beans in ramp butter, with some freshly ground black pepper, salt, and truffle salt to taste. When they are soft and creamy, stir in some sweet cherries, which you have previously halved and pitted. Mince some preserved lemon peel and stir that in, too.
This does involve a few ingredients you have to make in advance, but if you keep them always on hand, salads like this are quick and easy to create.