Tuesday, May 5

Farfalle Pasta with Fava Bean Pesto

A riff on pesto pasta using my favorite spring vegetable

Pasta with Fava Bean Pesto

Fava beans are one of my favorite spring vegetables, but they are only available at my local farmers' market for a few short weeks every year during the spring. This recipe transforms the beans into a smooth pesto by cooking the beans with garlic, chile, and olive oil until tender and then blending them with pine nuts, parsley, and parmesan cheese. The pesto is rich and thick and makes a great sauce for hot pasta. There is actually a lot of vegetables in every serving, which makes it a filling one-pot meal. Make extra pesto and spread it onto a sandwich or serve it as a dip later in the week.

Related Recipes:
- Pasta with Mashed Fava Beans
- Creamy Linguine with Peas
- Pesto Orecchiette with Chicken, Peas, & Fava Beans

Farfalle Pasta with Fava Bean Pesto:
- 2 1/2 lbs. fava beans in pods, beans removed from pods
- 1 lb. farfalle pasta
- 3/4 c. fresh parsley leaves
- 1/4 c. + 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese, plus more to garnish
- 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp. pine nuts, toasted
- pinch of red chile flakes
- kosher salt
- black pepper

  • Bring a pot of water to a boil, add in the fava beans, and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Drain the beans and transfer to a bowl of ice water to cool. Peel off the outer skin of the fava beans and discard.*
  • Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil over medium high heat and add in the garlic, chile flakes, and fava beans. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until the fava beans are soft.
  • Transfer the fava bean mixture to a food processor and add the pine nuts and parsley. Pulse until this forms a paste.
  • Slowly stream in 1/4 c. olive oil, then stir in the parmesan cheese. Check for seasoning.
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, season with salt, and cook the pasta according to package directions.
  • Drain the pasta, reserving 1/4 c. pasta cooking liquid.
  • Add the pasta back to the pot and toss with the fava bean pesto and some of the cooking water.
  • Divide onto plates and sprinkle with a little more parmesan cheese.

Serves four
*Fava beans can be prepped and refrigerated a few days in advance.