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Vegetables, Vegetarian

Creamed fava beans with tarragon

Creamed fava beans with tarragon
Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times

THE heady scent of aromatic garlic and rosemary fills the kitchen long before a magnificent roast leg of lamb goes out to the table, and you can picture already all the trimmings of a perfect spring dinner: fresh fava beans ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour 50 minutes | Serves 6
  • 6 pounds fresh fava beans in their pods
  • 4 teaspoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon minced shallots
  • 4 teaspoons flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • Small sprig of thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon minced tarragon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 freshly ground pepper

Step 1Remove the beans from the pods. Bring a large pot of water to boil, add the beans and simmer about 2 to 3 minutes until the beans are tender and the outer skins are loose. Drain and rinse under cold water.

Step 2Pop each bean out of its shell. You will have about 2 cups of fava beans. Set the beans aside while making the bechamel sauce.

Step 3Heat the butter in a small saucepan until melted. Add the minced shallots and saute over medium-low heat until tender, about 1 minute. Add the flour and warm for a minute, stirring. Gradually add the milk and whisk until smooth. Add a sprig of thyme and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the sauce from sticking to the bottom. Strain through a fine mesh strainer.

Step 4Stir in the lemon juice, tarragon, salt and pepper.

Step 5Stir the peeled fava beans into the cream sauce. Heat 1 to 2 minutes just until the fava beans are hot. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Note: From Donna Deane.

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