It's true, it's the very end of fava bean season -- but reconstituted dried beans work in this recipe, and if you live along the coast, you may even be growing these year-round in your yard.
These large beans are known as "poor man's meat" in parts of the Mediterranean (and were used in the original rendition of falafel, to be eaten during the meat-free Lent season). They grow well in the cooler, foggier coastline of California, and in this recipe they're the star of the vegetarian show. Paired with the archetypal summer crops of tomato and basil, this is the perfect light, summery meal. Many thanks to KCET show Chefs A'Field for the recipe.
Fava Bean Sandwich with Cherry Tomato Salad
2 cups fresh fava beans, shelled, blanched and shucked
Fleur de sel
1 teaspoon butter
2 thick slices good quality fresh bread
1 pint sliced cherry tomatoes
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 T sherry vinegar
1 New Walla Walla onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, chopped
Basil, for garnish
Shuck, blanch and peel 2 cups fava beans. Rough chop the favas with a knife. Season with fleur de sel, to taste. Set aside.
Slice bread in thick slices. Toast bread lightly, if desired. Butter one side of each slice.
Combine all of the salad ingredients in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Spread chopped fava beans on one slice of bread. Top with cherry tomato relish and finish with a second slice of bread. Slice and serve.