Much has changed since I last chronicled my kitchen adventures in this space. There’s been a wedding, honeymoon, busy times at work, and a seasonal CSA hiatus (the horror!). I also temporarily lost interest in reading books, but it took little more than new works by the inimitable Michael Pollan and David Sedaris – plus plenty of free time lounging on the beach in Hawaii – to pull me back from the mind-numbing abyss of blogs, magazines, emails, and the instruction manuals to our new toaster oven and waffle iron.
I didn’t stop cooking during this time, but doing so became less about creativity and relaxation, and more about getting dinner on the table STAT. I realize the latter is an everyday reality for plenty of people, and know that I’m fortunate to count cooking both as a welcome daily task and a leisure activity.
It should come as no surprise that the temptation to register for a library’s worth of cookbooks was great. In a feat of unexpected self-control, I limited myself to one, only bought one with a registry gift card, and instead registered for three types of bowls.
Momofuku and The Sprouted Kitchen Cookbook, in conjunction with my bowl trifecta, will likely inspire future posts. But today is about fava beans, one of the usual stars of my spring produce lineup. In the hubbub of wedding and honeymoon, I managed to miss most of their fleeting season. The seasonal loss has been a tragedy I mostly bear alone. For George, fava beans evoke a sort of PTSD from the hours of double-shucking for which he’s naively volunteered over the last couple of years.
I’ve incorporated favas in a few spring vegetable sautés and stirred them in to scrambled eggs here and there, but one of my favorite methods of fava preparation involves mashing them with lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper, and fresh herbs for a chunky hummus of sorts. The version I’m sharing today also includes avocado, which adds welcome creaminess, complements the favas’ vibrant green color, and handily stretches what is often a too-meager volume of fava beans. I’m pretty proud of what I’m sure isn’t an original name for this dish – favamole. It’s a reasonable pinch hitter for hummus, guacamole, or pesto.
Start shucking, friends!
1 cup double-shucked fava beans
1.5 cups avocado flesh
zest and juice of one lemon
¼ tsp each sea salt and black pepper
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
a few basil leaves, roughly torn
Put all ingredients in a food processor and pulse to combine to a chunky consistency. Serve.Treat leftover like you would guacamole – add an avocado pit to the bowl and cover with plastic wrap pressed against the surface of the favamole to prevent the avocado from browning.