Turns Out I Love Fava Beans

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We just got our first vegetable box today and it was like Christmas. I just kept imagining what I would make with this vegetable or that fruit and I knew what everything was but these:

Fava Beans

In my kitchen they looked like giant alien green beans, they were the size of zucchini! With a little help from some friends and the internet, I discovered that they are fava beans and can be a bit of work but are so so worth it once they’re ready. You have to shuck them and then parboil or steam them to remove their inner outer waxy covering.

Once I got them all cleaned I decided to make a pasta sauce with them and I must say it was amazing. I found this recipe on theseasonalchef.com

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1-1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano (I used italian seasoning since I’m out of Oregano)
1-1/2 cups chicken stock
salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cups cooked and peeled fava beans
3/4 pound dried fettuccine
Parmesan cheese

1. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan . Add the garlic and saute until light brown. Stir in the oregano, then add 1 cup of the stock. Bring to a boil, season with salt and pepper, and add 1-1/2 cups of the fava beans. Simmer for a few minutes to blend the flavors.

2. Scrape into a blender and puree with the remaining 1/2 cup stock until smooth. Return the sauce to the pan and add the remaining 1/2 cup favas. Simmer gently and taste for seasoning. Add salt and especially pepper.

3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta al dente. Drain, reserving about 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Pour the pasta into a warm serving bowl and add the sauce. Toss well and thin with the pasta water, if necessary, until the sauce is glossy and not sticky. Serve immediately. Grate the cheese over the top at the table.

YUM!

Chocolate Yogurt Snack Cakes

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Chocolate Yogurt Snack Cakes

Originally uploaded by heidimonkey

Today I made 2 1/2 dozen of these. I don’t know why I made so many, I blame my quantity issues on my mother I think. There would have been closer to 3 dozen these 6 are “Texas-sized” and have about a pint of berries in them total.

I got the recipe from Smitten Kitchen which I absolutely love. I’ll reprint it below so that you don’t have to link to their site to get it.

Chocolate Yogurt Snack Cakes
From David Lebovitz’s The Sweet Life in Paris

Please note, I doubled my recipe to get nearly 3 dozen, this recipe is for one dozen only.

Makes 12 cupcake-sized snack cakes

7 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain, whole-milk yogurt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper cupcake liners or lightly butter the pan.

2. Melt the chocolate with 1/4 cup of the oil in the microwave on high for 30 seconds, then in 15 second increments, stirring well between each until smooth. You can also do this in a double boiler on your stovetop.

3. In another bowl, mix the remaining 1/4 cup oil with yogurt, sugar, eggs and vanilla and almond extracts.

4. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the yogurt mixture. Stir lightly a couple times, then add the melted chocolate and stir until just smooth.

5. Divide the batter among the muffin cups and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they feel barely set in the middle and a tester or toothpick comes out clean.

6. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack before serving with coffee and a nice dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream and any berries you can scrounge up in your fridge. Or, you know, as is.

Do ahead: These cakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for four days.

Like I said, I added almost a pint of berries to the last 1/3 of my bowl of batter to make these giant muffins. So good, can’t stop eating them.

Snowy Days and Cookies

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I’m finally going to do some Christmas baking tonight. I’ve been wanting to make these with the actual Valrhona fèves since I saw the recipe last summer. I have made it several times with regular chocolate chips and it is divine!

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I think these will be for the bf’s family white elephant. Apparently the do some zany food related one every year so I’ll make the chocolate chip cookies and these from not martha.org. The recipe is excerpted from Martha Stewart here, minus a bit of sugar which works out perfectly.

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Note: the images in this post are not mine. The chocolate chip cookies image is from the original recipe in the New York Times and the molasses cookies picture is from the not martha post. I’ve made both before and they’re wonderful!

OMG YUM!

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I made collard greens for the first time last night. So. Freaking. Good! They were sweet and spicy, had an excellent texture, and the perfect tang without too much of a vinegar taste. Only took about 45 minutes to make and pretty easy to boot. I love this website, I get tons of awesome recipes from them. HERE is the recipe for this dish. I can’t express how much I love this site.

Apple Puffed Pancakes

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Is this a food blog now? I guess so.

Saturday’s breakfast:

I got the recipe from this fantastic blog. I have made it both in a muffin tin (grease them well) and a regular cast iron pan. Large pan is easier clean up but the little ones are really impressive. They’re almost like a yorkshire pudding.Enjoy!