Sunday, November 4, 2012

Fava Bean Salad with Herbs--Greek Style

This simple salad comes from the Greek tradition. I found it in a book about Mediterranean food. I made this salad for the first time in the summer, two years ago, to serve with grilled meats. I think it turned out pretty good. Someone even asked me for the recipe. Recently, I made it again to use the rest of my most delicate herbs from my garden, which already suffered a few cold nights.

First time, I made this salad with Fava beans and mint, which the recipe called for. Since I am not a big fan of Fava beans, last time I used baby Lima beans (can be fresh or frozen) and I like this version better. I also replaced mint with the last harvest of dill from my herb garden.

Bean salads, especially this one, enriched with feta cheese, can be very filling. But chopped herbs (dill or mint) and lemon juice neutralized this sensation. In fact, I find this salad rather refreshing, although also nutritious.

Fava or Lima Bean Salad

2lb baby Fava or baby Lima beans (fresh or frozen),
juice from half a lemon,
lemon zest grated from one lemon,
1 cup crumbled feta cheese, preferably Greek,
1 garlic clove, minced,
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil,
1/ 3 cup chopped chive,
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill or mint,
freshly ground pepper.

1. Cook beans in a large pot with a tbs of salt, until soft. Drain and cool down. Transfer to a serving bowl.
2. In a small bowl make dressing by whisking lemon juice, lemon peel, olive oil and pepper.
3. Add feta cheese, chives and dill or mint to the beans. Mix gently to coat the beans with feta and herbs.
4. Pour the dressing over the beans and again gently mix all the ingredients.

Leave in a refrigerator for 30 minutes to let the flavors infuse. Serve cold.

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