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Fava Beans: Casine (Italian Farm House)

We used to eat fava beans in Egypt, where they are a common street food, though there they were cooked from the dried bean. Now we eat them fresh. They are a large bean, that needs to be shelled. When young and small, saute the shelled beans or even eat them raw with olive oil and sea salt. As they get older and bigger, shell the beans, blanch them in boiling water for a minute, immediately cool them in cold water. You can then tear off a piece of the outer skin and pop the bean out of its skin. Those beans can then be used for purees, soups, sautes, or salads.

Casine fava bean

Dragon Langerie

A purple dappled, creamy yellow, wax-type bean, with a 5-8 inch long flattened pod. Tender and delicious!

Dragon Langerie


The quintessential green bean. The 5 to 7 inch pods are full of real green bean flavor.



This heirloom is my first try at pole beans. I hear pole beans have the best flavor, but they don’t produce as much at once, rather more slowly over the whole summer. These are green, with purple streaks, though the streaks fade when cooked. They are good fresh, shelled and dry.



This is my favorite type of green bean. A french/filet or haricots verts type, it is small (4-5 inch), thin and tender. I didn’t care for green beans much until I grew these. Now I love them. Our standard way to cook them is to saute them in olive oil with garlic and hazelnuts.


Tiger’s Eye

This is another dry bean, an heirloom from Chile and Argentina, also called Pepa de Zeppalo. A beautiful bean, it is mustard yellow with burgundy swoops. It is good as a shelling bean, too, and great for soups and refried beans.

(picture to come)


Here is some information and recipes for green beans from Angelic Organics.

Fresh Shell Bean Purée

From Chez Panisse Vegetables by Alice Waters

  • 1 pound fresh shell beans
  • 2 or 3 cloves of garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • a few sprigs of savory or rosemary
  • ¼ to ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Shell beans and discard the pods. Cook the beans in lightly salted water in a saucepan until they nearly fall apart. Drain them of all but a cup of their liquid. In the saucepan, add the garlic, peeled and sliced; a little salt, the savory or rosemary; and about ¼ cup olive oil. Cook and stir over low heat until the beans are soft and begin to form a paste. Add more water if necessary. This will take from 10 to 30 minutes. Taste during the cooking and remove the herb sprigs when the beans have enough flavor. The garlic will soften and you can mash it into the beans; purée the beans and garlic in a food processor for a more uniform texture, if desired. Finish the purée with as much olive oil as your conscience allows and adjust seasoning.

Serve on grilled bread. Makes about 2 cups purée.

A customer shared these fava bean recipes:

Fresh Fava Bean Salad from Lauro Kitchen

  • Fava beans- blanched briefly in salted water and peeled
  • Pecorino cheese- shaved thin
  • Lemon juice
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Toss fava beans in bowl with extra virgin olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper. Shave or grate pecorino on top and serve.

Fresh Fava Bean Puree from Lauro Kitchen

  • 2 Cups fava beans, blanched and peeled
  • 1 Tsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 TBS finely chopped mint
  • 1 TBS lemon juice
  • Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Using a mortar and pestle or food processor, combine favas, garlic, mint, lemon juice, Parmesan and extra virgin olive oil. Puree until smooth or to desired consistency. Add salt and pepper and season to taste. Serve with toasted or grilled crostinis and garnish with a little more extra virgin olive oil.

Fresh Fava Beans with Spanish Chorizo from Lauro Kitchen

  • 4 Cups fava beans, blanched and peeled
  • Spanish chorizo or similar sausage cut into rings
  • 1 Medium onion finely diced
  • 2 TBS parsley finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in sauté pan over medium heat. Saute onion and sliced chorizo until onion is translucent and chorizo is softened. Toss fava beans into sauté pan and warm for about 1 minute. Toss chopped parsley in. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with a little more extra virgin olive oil if necessary and serve. Serves well as a salad on its own or as an accompaniment to grilled or sautéed fish. 

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