Fava beans, or broad beans, are in season again. I used to make this dish in Kanazawa when the fava beans (soramame, 空豆) came to market.
Buying enough fresh fava beans in the pod to make a dish can be a challenge if you don’t have a baseline for measurements–and that’s assuming that all the beans are fully formed! A pound of pods ought to yield about 1 US cup, 10 oz., 280 g. The original recipe calls for canned beans, if that’s easier to measure. I also tend to serve this with one egg person for protein.
Oh, and I suppose you could serve this with a nice Chianti, but only if you pronounce it correctly.
In Japan, if there’s no weight marked on the package, one large pod is roughly 11 g / 0.4 oz. For this recipe, you’ll need 30 oz (850 g / 3 cups) of fresh, shelled beans, about 80 pods. I often halve the recipe because of the cost and quantity of fresh beans and serve it as okazu.
Vegetarian, gluten free, and can be vegan if you ditch the egg.
Ful Medames with Fresh Fava Beans
Adapted from Saveur‘s “Ful Medames (Stewed Fava Beans)”
Ingredients (see notes for translation)
30 oz / 3 cups / 850 g fresh fava beans, shelled (instructions below, step 1)
¼ cup (60 mL) fresh lemon juice
¼ cup olive oil (60 mL), plus more for garnish
2 tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp cayenne
4 cloves garlic
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 hard-boiled eggs, cut into 6 wedges each
2 TBSP finely chopped parsley
Blender or food processor
1. Boil a pot of salted water and prepare an ice bath. Shuck the beans, then boil for one minute. Set in the ice bath; once the beans are cool, drain and remove the skin.
2. In a blender or food processor, add beans, lemon juice, olive oil, cumin, cayenne, garlic, salt, and pepper. Blend into a chunky, hummus-like paste.
3. Transfer to a serving dish with a silicon spatula. Surround with egg wedges; drizzle with more oil; and garnish with parsley before serving.
fresh fava beans: soramame, 空豆
lemon juice: remon, レモン
olive oil: orîbu oiru, オリーブオイル
cumin: kumin, クミン
cayenne: kaiennu peppâ, カイエンヌペッパー
garlic: ninnniku, ニンニク
kosher salt: arashio, 粗塩
pepper: koshô, 胡椒
eggs: tamago, 卵
parsley: paseri, パセリ
food processor (fûdo purosessa, フードプロセッサ) or blender (mikisâ, ミキサー)
Silicone spatula (shirikon hera , シリコンヘラ)