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Day 212: Fava Beans with Purple Onion and Mint (but really just spaghetti) and Passionfruit Sherbet


Fava beans: I’m not a fan.

I love the look of them; I’d put them out like my mom puts out Bosc pears at Christmas, like a little bouquet of beans, if I didn’t have to eat them. I’m always tempted by the robust, pregnant-looking pods at the market, probably because they remind me a little bit of Jamie Oliver, and today I gave in. (I should have known that they are too similar to Lima beans – one of my least favourite foods after black licorice, which I don’t even like other people eating.) I did a quick google for ideas and one of the first recipes that came up called for boiling the beans and then sautéing them with purple onion, which I had a wedge of in the fridge, and sprinkling with fresh mint, which is currently taking over my yard. Perfect.

I had a feeling I wouldn’t like it, but I was hopeful. I so wanted to. In the end I ate some of W’s spaghetti (so did Mike) with the onions picked out of the fava beans (also known as broad beans), which themselves landed in the compost bin.

At least now I know.

So afterward, I made passion fruit sherbet. Makes me sound like a hero, right? Not really; it required absolutely no skill beyond scraping the frozen goods off the paddle into a bowl while attempting to maneuver past my mouth. 

I’ve had this package of passion fruit puree from More than Mangos sitting on my counter for at least a month – another pouch of mango puree was turned into juice a few weeks ago when there were extra kids around, but we’re really not juice drinkers around here (even W won’t touch it. I know.) So it occurred to me that it would make a really easy sorbet. As I dumped it into the ice cream machine (with 1/2 cup of sugar – that stuff is tart) I thought I’d one-up myself and pour a cup of half and half in as well to turn it from sorbet into sherbet, which differs in that it’s made with milk ingredients. The whole process took about fifteen seconds of actual work – I didn’t even combine the ingredients before pouring them in – just let the machine do it all. I then made up for what I didn’t eat at dinner with dessert.
 All in all an odd dinner, but it ended well.


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7 comments on “Day 212: Fava Beans with Purple Onion and Mint (but really just spaghetti) and Passionfruit Sherbet

  1. Buddiegirl
    July 31, 2008 at 7:19 am

    I totally agree with you about both lima beans and black licorice. When I was a kid, my mom would buy those frozen mixed vegetables that had lima beans in them. My sister and I would have to sit at the table until we finished our vegetables, which sometimes would take hours. To this day, I can’t stand even looking at frozen mixed vegetables without feeling like gagging. I would have to be seriously starving with no other food around, to even think about eating lima beans.

    As for black licorice, the only thing worse than plain black licorice is the salty kind that some people think is the best treat ever. Yuck and double yuck.

  2. robyn
    July 31, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    I’m quite possibly the only person who likes fava beans. I love how they’re shiny and super pasty on the inside.

  3. Marita
    July 31, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    Sometimes it is the meals that don’t work that are the best because they give you an excuse to eat icecream for dinner 😀 Or breakfast cereal, I’m a big fan of breakfast cereal for dinner.

    Love your blog, been reading along for a few weeks now getting inspiration for cooking.

  4. Katharine
    July 31, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    Ha!! I love licorice. (licorice or tiger flavoured shakes at Peter’s….mmmm…..) And I also like the salty licorice too! I must be the only person on the planet, hey? (other than my mother)

  5. JulieVR
    July 31, 2008 at 11:06 pm

    So you’re one of those people who drinks licorice milkshakes!! Sorry, I don’t think we can be friends anymore…

  6. Ada
    August 1, 2008 at 10:11 am

    Did you peel those fava beans? From you picture, it looks as if they still have that tough outer skin on them. I love them. I take them out of the pod, steam them briefly and then peel off that outer skin. (They slip out; it’s easy.) You’re left with a brilliant green bean that’s, if cooked just slightly, is not mushy. Chill them right away and serve up with some similarly cooked asparagus and some swirls of sharp cheese perhaps a splash of basalmic and olive oil. Yum.

  7. JulieVR
    May 20, 2009 at 7:10 am

    Ha – I think you’re right! I missed that inner skin. Higher in fiber, but they might be tastier without! Thanks!

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