Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Local week Dinner Grilled Beet and Fava bean salad with blue cheese

Today's dinner was inspired by a recipe Kerrie found for grilled fava beans (hopefully she can find the link to it)
We had lots of fresh salad greens and beets from last week, alongside with some locally made blue cheese and fava beans from the regional market.

1 lb whole fava beans
4 small beets
4-6 cloves of garlic
lemon juice
olive oil
cumin seeds
kosher salt
black pepper

pre heat your grill

Peel and slice the beets, I use a vegetable peeler for my beets but you can easily do it with a knife. Try to get your slices cut to a similar thickness. Lay out a sheet of foil and layer the beets in the center drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with kosher salt and black pepper. Wrap them tightly and set aside.

For the fava beans, most recipes I looked at called for cooking the favas right on your grill grates or in a grill basket. The recipe that Kerrie found called for cooking them in foil which is what we did. Wash the favas to be sure there is no loose grit, as you wash them give them a shake, if they sound like they are rattling around in the pod they may not be very fresh. They should still be OK but if they are really loose you may consider chucking them. You will want to do two packets of foil for a lb of beans. Lay 1/2 of the beans on the foil, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle on some lemon juice, add 2-3 gloves of smashed garlic and a tsp or two of cumin seeds (toasted)
Seal tightly and repeat with the other 1/2 of the beans.
Place the beats and the favas on the grill and cook  at medium heat for 20-25 minutes flipping every 5-7 minutes or so.

Once the beans and beets have cooked through remove them form the fire, open the packets and let them rest until they are cool enough to handle. Open the fava bean pods and set  the beans aside. While they cool pile up some greens in a bowl or on a plate, crumble on some blue cheese and then top with the warm beets and fava beans.

We dressed them with some white balsamic vinegar and sunflower oil and a little more cracked black pepper.

The seasonings for the fava beans are pretty much limitless, I will say they did not pick up much flavor from the cooking process but the flavors around them, and the texture were great. I might add some more liquid next time and go for more of a braise to get the flavor into the pods, and therefore into the beans.

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