Sunday, June 10, 2012

Fava Beans, Snap Peas and Garlic Scapes with Croutons and an Egg

It's over.

Sometime, over the past week, asparagus season in New York came to an end.

Where was I? Making chocolate chip cookies and baking up leftover tortilla casseroles. Letting the leftover strands of asparagus in my fridge go to waste because I just assumed I could get more on Saturday. 

Every winter, I await asparagus season eagerly. I tell myself that as soon as the first stalks of asparagus show up at the farmers' market, I'm going to make the most of it. Raw, shaved asparagus salad. Asparagus on pizza, in pasta and as soup. Even pickled asparagus.

I ran into a friend at the farmers' market, and we vowed that next year, we'd eat asparagus every day, savoring it while it lasted.

Luckily, the farmers' market was far from empty. Since I went to the market with no real plan, I came back with a random assortment of everything that called my name. A quart of fresh strawberries. A bag of sweet cherries. One cucumber. Two zucchini. Fava beans. Garlic scapes. Sugar snap peas. Huge scallions. Eggs. And no plan for what to make.

Mark Bittman to the rescue. His How to Cook Everything Vegetarian book had at least 7 recipes with fava beans, including one with fava beans, bread and hard-boiled eggs.

But I had so many deliciously fresh, just-picked vegetables that I had to dress it up.

I added fava beans (unpeeled--they were just so fresh!), garlic scapes, chopped sugar snap peas, sourdough croutons, a chopped hard-boiled egg, and a sprinkling of chopped scallions.

The unpeeled favas were so tender, the season's first. The garlic scapes added a bite to the dish, and they were all the seasoning the dish needed, besides salt and pepper. The egg made it into a proper dinner. 

I had a big bowl for dinner, and then I packaged my leftovers up with a hard-boiled egg (unchopped) for lunch the next day.

Fava Beans, Snap Peas and Garlic Scapes with Croutons and an Egg
recipe adapted from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian

This recipe makes a dinner-sized portion for two and could be easily scaled up  

2 eggs
1/2 cup shelled fava beans (I left mine in their shells because they were so tender)
2/3 cup sugar snap peas, chopped into thirds
3-4 garlic scapes, chopped into two-inch pieces
3 thick slices day-old bread (I had fresh sourdough, so I dried it out in a 250 degree oven for 5 minutes before using), sliced into cubes
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 scallion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, cover two eggs with water. Bring to a full boil, and then turn off the heat, cover the eggs, and allow them to sit undisturbed for 9 minutes. After 9 minutes, transfer the eggs to an ice water bath and allow them to cool. This stops the cooking and makes them easier to peel.

In a large saute pan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add cubed bread and saute for 5 minutes, stirring regularly so the bread toasts on all sides.

Add the remaining oil and fava beans, sugar snap peas, and garlic scapes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Saute, stirring regularly, for about 5 minutes.

While the mixture cooks, peel the eggs and cut up into eighths.

Remove the fava bean mixture from the heat, and transfer to large bowls. Top with a sliced egg, scallions, and salt and pepper (as needed).

Eat, and smile.


  1. This sounds delicious! I'm very jealous of your fresh fava beans. I can barely find them dried around here!

    1. Thanks! I got lucky that one vendor at the farmer's market had a pile. Hopefully some fresh ones will make their way to you soon.

  2. Oh no! Say it isnt so! I'm going to miss them dearly...but I suppose now at least there will be room in my life for favas. Silver lining?

    1. Silver lining, indeed! They were so tasty, and I never knew they could be so tender at the start of the season.

  3. That is so lovely! I love Bittman....