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gloriously green

May 03 2009 by Kristin at The Kitchen Sink in Recipe,Side » 15 comments


It worked! It really, really worked. All my whining and locavorism lapses last week did the trick: they ushered in spring. Real spring. Sunshine, warmth, green. And allergies, lots of those. If I knew that it would be that easy to bring an end to last week’s persistent, relentless gloom and grey, I would’ve been making strawberry-rhubarb crisp, pie, crumble and the like in February. Really, I would have.


Now that spring finally seems like a reality—something I can see and feel—I only have eyes for green: not just those chartreuse mini-leaves budding on trees everywhere I look, but green on my plate too. We’ve been eating asparagus like it’s going out of style. And, with a little luck at the market, we’ve been eating fava beans too—just buttery and meaty enough for me to forget just how tedious the little buggers are to prepare.


It seems appropriate to ring in spring with this recipe that combines both the asparagus and the fava beans. Along with tiny peas, minced shallot, thinly shredded basil and a little bit of butter, this dish is pure spring: simple, clean, bright, and gloriously green.


This recipe is perhaps most obviously a side dish, but I combined it with chopped toasted walnuts and crumbled feta for a hearty lunch too. I think it would also be great stirred into some pasta or farro, along with a squeeze of lemon and a dusting of parmesan. I’m sure I’ll dream up some other uses, too, as I continue to ring in real spring.


Asparagus, Peas & Favas with Basil
Adapted from Gourmet

Printable Recipe

1/4 cup finely chopped shallots (about 2)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups fresh shelled or frozen peas
1 cup fresh shelled or frozen fava beans
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Handful of torn basil leaves (about 3/4 cup

Cook shallots in butter in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until just tender, about 4 minutes.

Stir in asparagus, peas, favas, sea salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, then seal skillet with foil. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are tender but still slightly al dente, about 8 minutes. Stir in basil and sea salt to taste.

15 comments so far. »
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  1. Half Assed Kitchen says on May 03 2009 at 8:21 pm:

    That looks outrageously healthy.

  2. Whitney Merritt says on May 03 2009 at 8:23 pm:

    I need to track down some favas. Where did you find yours?

    I am SO excited that Green City is officially back on Wed. Yay for the growing season (finally).

  3. Melissa says on May 03 2009 at 10:27 pm:

    This is most definitely spring in a bowl, and like you said, customizable for a hearty lunch as well. Glorious, absolutely!

  4. sue bette says on May 04 2009 at 3:51 am:

    I don’t think it gets more springy than an asparagus and fava bean combo!! I love the idea of mixing in some farro.

  5. Kara says on May 04 2009 at 7:00 am:

    It seems that you stole spring from us – give it back! I guess this just means I’ll have to make your rhubarb-strawberry crisp or this flavorful and delicious spring veggie dish – not a bad trade.

  6. Amy says on May 04 2009 at 8:28 am:

    You must have sent spring to Ithaca, too – we had asparagus for the first time at the farmer’s mkt! Whee! What a great, green spring salad. :)

  7. Jen Schall @ My Kitchen Addiction says on May 04 2009 at 1:02 pm:

    This looks delicious – I love asparagus!

  8. maris says on May 05 2009 at 10:25 am:

    That’s a whole lotta green! Love asparagus and basil but I’ve never had them together!

  9. Emma says on May 05 2009 at 11:02 am:

    Thanks for the inspiration … went home last night and cooked a version of this with soya beans and lots of fresh herbs. I tried the feta and walnuts as a topping and it was gorgeous.

  10. Tabitha (From Single to Married) says on May 05 2009 at 1:21 pm:

    I really don’t eat enough greens, thanks for the gentle reminder. :)

  11. Chocolate and Toast says on May 05 2009 at 4:39 pm:

    Suddenly all the cookies and cookie dough I’ve been sampling (recipe testing, you know) are weighing heavy in my tummy . . .
    Thanks for a big green reality check, looks super yummy!

  12. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on May 05 2009 at 7:14 pm:

    Half Assed Kitchen: If butter swathed vegetables are outrageously healthy, sign me up!

    Whitney: Enjoy the market tomorrow!

    Melissa: Thanks!

    Sue: Agree!

    Kara: That’s a pretty good up shot!

    Amy: Whee, indeed! Happy spring to you.

    Jen: Me too. I can’t get enough these days.

    maris: It sure is!

    Emma: Wonderful! Glad to hear you liked it.

    Tabitha: My pleasure. : )

    Chocolate and Toast: Recipe testing is a tough job but, as they say, somebody’s got to do it. : )

  13. alejandra says on May 06 2009 at 8:46 pm:

    This looks delicious! I just bought a big batch of asparagus and a huge bag of fava beans. I might have to try it out.

  14. Kristin at The Kitchen Sink says on May 10 2009 at 7:18 pm:

    alejandra: I hope you do! Let us know how it turns out for you!

  15. Kevin says on May 29 2009 at 6:58 pm:

    What nice Spring greens! I like the sound of adding feta and nuts and making a salad out of it.

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