Since I had willing help shucking my fava beans, I decided to make more with pasta tonight. Fava beans go extraordinarily well with bacon, pancetta, or any salty porky meat. My mother always made them with pancetta and cooked them for a long time. I don’t cook them quite so long.
Tonight, I’ve made them with bacon, onions and peas. I added the peas because the fava beans I bought today were smaller than the ones I bought yesterday. Once they were shucked, there was merely a handful of tiny beans. The peas went a long way toward adding some green to the dish. Fresh peas should be in the markets any day now–can’t wait.
With the exception of the fava bean preparation (it’s a big exception–I know), this dish can be made in the time it takes to cook the pasta.
Pasta con le Fave
2 lbs fava beans (gross weight, including pods) shucked blanched and peeled (see last night’s post)
1 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
half a small onion, diced finely
1/4 lb slab bacon, cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 cup chicken broth
4 tbls extra-virgin olive oil
grated pecorino for sprinkling
In a broad skillet, render the fat from the bacon cubes on very low heat for about 7 – 10 minutes. Add onion and continue sauteing on low heat. Add fava beans, peas and broth and simmer until pasta is cooked.
Toss in cooked pasta and drizzle with more extra-virgin olive oil, along with some pasta cooking liquid. Saute on high heat for a minute or so. Should be slightly soupy consistency. Sprinkle with plenty of pecorino romano.