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Tomato & Fava Bean Salad

Aaah, summer! About a week ago we picked our first tomato. Not just the first tomato of this year, mind you… the first tomato I have ever grown, any year. My friend Art says his tomatoes are not ready yet but his garden is by a lake where the temperatures are cooler than on my southwest stair landing. That landing has room for only one container, meaning only one tomato plant, but it has proven a good spot this year.

Art’s wife, my friend Marlene, is an incredible cook. She re-introduced me a few years back, to the fava bean. Fava beans are used a lot in mideast cooking. They are large and have a meaty flavor, without being grainy. And they look sort of like a little pillow with a dark line on half the edge… Marlene says they smile!

Well, fava beans are really easy to prepare, they come in cans ready to eat… just rinse and add whatever you love. Sometimes I add them to red spaghetti sauce for an instant dinner. Marlene makes an amazing fava bean salad. So I decided this was how we would celebrate the harvest of our first tomato… a fava bean salad.

It was perfect. The only things in the salad I didn’t grow myself, were olive oil and fava beans. I opened a couple of cans of fava beans (they had cooled in the refrigerator overnight) and rinsed them well. I added dill weed from the garden, some chopped parsley and swiss chard leaves (like spinach) from the garden, and the exquisite fresh tomato, just picked. I guess I also added some black pepper we got at the store, and then the olive oil. It was just wonderful!!!

Photos: Plant before the harvest (we picked the tomato furthest to the back), me holding freshly-picked tomato, fava bean salad ready to eat.

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