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Italian Bean Salad

Broad Beans have such a short fresh seasonal period that you must grab them when you see them and this recipe is all you need to do with them. This is a nice and simple dish which is all about the coming together of three prized greens, steamed to perfection and topped off with a simple dressing of cracked pepper and poppy seeds. This could be a lovely starter to an Italian meal, or as a side dish to a white meat or fish main such as the Lemon Cream Veal, Stuffed Pork or Fish with Tomatoes and Capers. Recipe provided by Jasmine Anderson.
Pictured: Italian Bean Salad

A good handful broad beans
3 bunches asparagus
3 handfuls snow peas
1 garlic, finely chopped
1 chilli, very finely diced
1 lime, juiced
Splash of walnut oil, or another nut oil, or extra virgin olive oil
Splash of balsamic vinegar
Shaved parmesan to serve

Steam broad beans (3 minutes). Peel smaller pods, set aside.

Steam asparagus/snow peas.   Refresh in cold water.

Mix lime juice/balsamic/chilli/walnut oil and chopped garlic.

Garnish with parmesan, cracked pepper/poppy seeds.

Serves 4

TasteTip - Broad beans are also known as fava beans, particularly in the US. Fresh broad beans have a very short season - during the summer, therefore they are often sold frozen, canned or dried, which do not compare in taste and texture and can even seem floury, so try to buy them in season whenever possible. Young beans can be eaten pods and all, but larger, older broad beans need to have the tough pods removed after the first boil.  Dried broad beans are mainly used to make spreads or purées or for flavouring stews. Egyptian ful medames is a dried variety of broad beans cooked with garlic and lemon.