The first broad beans of the season are a delicacy that doesn’t require more than a pinch of salt, but not all broad beans are created equal. As the beans mature on the plant, they become starchier, making them less suited to the quick-blanch-double-pod method. Fortunately, these slightly older beans can still be turned into wonderful meals. So, if you’ve come to the end of your broad bean harvests, or if you’ve bought end of season beans that are a bit starchier, here are three simple meal suggestions to make the most of them.
THREE WAYS WITH STARCHY BROAD BEANS
Lemony broad bean & green pea spread
This is a zesty take on mushy peas that’s great on a slice of toast. If you don’t have broad beans you could even make it with just peas.
broad beans (double podded)
- Boil the broad beans for 5 minutes, then drain and rinse with cold water and slide off the shells.
- Boil the peas for 8 minutes and drain.
- Mash the peas and broad beans in a bowl with a little water to loosen it up, then add olive oil, lemon juice and zest, black pepper and sea salt.
Broad beans with bulgur, feta and lime.
single podded broad beans
firm lettuce (optional)
lime juice and zest with a good pinch of salt stirred in
- cover the bulgur with twice the volume of boiling water and leave to soak for 10 minutes.
- Heat olive oil in a casserole and add chopped onion and broad beans, fry with a pinch of salt on medium heat then stew on low heat until the onions are brown, the beans are soft inside and their skins slightly caramelised.
- Season with black pepper and stir in some chopped lettuce until wilted (optional)
- Combine bulgur and beans, dress with lime zest and juice and top off with fresh tomatoes, sea salt and feta.
Pasta with broad beans in tomato sauce
single-podded broad beans
peeled tinned tomatoes
pasta of choice
pecorino romano cheese
- Stew onions and broad beans as described above.
- Add garlic and sautee for a minute, then add tomatoes. Break them up with a wooden spoon and season the sauce to taste with black pepper and some salt.
- Stir in cooked pasta of choice, then serve and top off with sea salt flakes and/or heaps of grated pecorino cheese and a drizzle of olive oil.