Fava beans are one of the oldest cultivated plants. They had been grown in the Mediterranean regions, in China and
in others Asian countries for over 5000 years.
They are grown in California and are available fresh from June to the end of August, and dry all year
The fava beans come in a pod and they have to be shelled like their cousins, the peas. To eliminate the inner skin,
blanch the fava beans for 4 to 5 minutes and discard the translucent skin that covers them.
Use the fava as a side dish simply dressed with olive oil, salt and pepper, if you prefer add a dash of vinegar;
mash to cover pane fritto, fried
bread orcrostini; make
with peas and artichokes for a special pasta dish.
In Sicily and all over Italy fave are eaten raw with
bread and pecorino cheese.
Be aware that some people are allergic to raw fava beans. Cooking may prevent any allergic reaction.
Fava beans are rich in L-dopa, an element used in the treatment of the Parkinson’s disease and in the management of
Fava beans are abundant in Sicily and in particular in the province of Syracuse, where the water is plentiful, the
terrain is rich and very favorable to the growing of this vegetable.
They are dried and used in the Mediterranean, Middle Easter and Asian cuisine. In Syracuse the dry beans are boiled
with garlic and then dressed with oil, salt and pepper. Eat them using your hand, pick up a fava bean with
casualness, make a small incision to the skin using with your teeth and extract the fava by sucking it. It is easy
to learn and they are delicious!
Boiled Fava Beans
Bollite alla Siracusana”)
(“Fave Vugghiuti a’ Siracusana”)
lb. dry fava beans
tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper
Rinse the dry fava beans and place in a 6 quart sauce pot with about 4 quarts of
water. Soak overnight.
Using a knife, eliminate the little, dark membrane on top of each bean.
Rinse beans and place them with the garlic, 1 tablespoon of salt in a 6 quart sauce pot with 4 quarts of water.
Bring to a boil and lower flame, simmer for 2 hours.
Taste for doneness, when ready drain the extra liquid and transfer into a serving dish.
Dress fava beans with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and serve hot or cold.
Fava Beans Rabbit Style-
Fave a Cunignu
the fave are cooked the same way.
When ready drain the extra liquid and return to the pot. Over a medium heat add the olive oil, salt and pepper to
taste, 2 teaspoons of oregano and ¼ cup of vinegar.
Reduce for 2 minutes and transfer into a serving dish. Serve hot or cold.
Fresh Fava Beans
In a 6 quart saucepan, over a high heat sauté a sliced medium onion in 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Add 2 pounds of
fresh fava beans, 1 cup of water and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring