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Fava Greens on Toast


One of the best reasons to grow vegetables is you get to eat food that almost no one else has access to. Arugula blossoms. Green coriander seed. Fennel pollen. Garlic scapes. Foods that are so special and delicate that they never find their way into a grocery store and only show up sometimes at the farmer’s market. I thought I had sampled almost all of these little gourmet extras, but it turns out I had a fabulous crop growing in my garden and I didn’t even realize it: fava greens. I always grow favas for their delicious beans, but a student in my Kitchen Garden Series class told me he makes pesto with his fava bean greens. I immediately went home and sampled a leaf.

Hello! The greens are fabulous. Big, succulent, and with a faint fava-y flavor.


I couldn’t wait to try cooking with the greens. Since my favas haven’t flowered yet, I decided to be prudent and only snipped off one pair of leaves from each plant. This yielded one packed cup of greens. Not nearly enough for pesto, but plenty for an extra special lunch.

I hurried into the kitchen, tossed a couple of slices of olive bread under the broiler to toast and wilted the greens in just a bit of oil. Then I rubbed the toast with garlic, drizzled it with my favorite olive oil, and layered on a thick slice of ricotta salata cheese, the fava greens, and slices of warm boiled egg. I ate the toasts on my porch in the sun. It was perfect.


Garlic Toasts with Wilted Fava Greens, Ricotta Salata, and Hard Boiled Egg

I used rosemary olive bread for the toasts and eggs from our chickens. Very fresh eggs are difficult to peel, so I always try to hard boil eggs that are at least a week old.

What you’ll need:

2 eggs

1 packed cup of fava greens

1 tsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling

2 thick slices of good bread

1 clove garlic, peeled

Ricotta salata cheese


Place the eggs in a medium saucepan and fill it with cool water (the eggs should be covered by about an inch of water). Bring the water to boil over high heat. Begin watching the pan carefully when little bubbles begin rising up. As soon as the first big bubble breaks on the surface, set a timer for one minute. When the timer buzzes, remove the pan from the heat and let the eggs sit for exactly one more minute. Then drain off the hot water and run the eggs under cold water until they are cool enough to handle. Peel immediately. The eggs will have perfectly cooked whites and yolks that have just barely solidified at their core. (This timing was developed in my kitchen, which is at sea level. You may need to add more time if cooking at a higher elevation.)

Meanwhile, rinse the fava greens in cool water. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the wet fava greens into the pan and toss until they are just wilted (30 seconds or less).

Toast the bread lightly. Rub the garlic clove over the surface of the toasts and then drizzle with olive oil. Top each piece of toast with a thick slice of ricotta salata cheese, fava greens, and slices of hard boiled egg. Sprinkle kosher salt and freshly ground pepper over the eggs. Serve immediately.

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9 Responses to “Fava Greens on Toast”

  1. 1
    meg Says:

    That looks & sounds fantastic! And the radishes on the side? Perfection! I can’t wait till our little chicks starting giving up some eggs. Yum.

  2. 2
    Carri Says:

    Wow- I have tons of fava beans growing right now and I hadn’t even thought of eating them! I think I’ll try doing pesto with them this weekend! Thanks!

  3. 3
    Amanda Says:

    You just blew my mind – arugula blossoms? I was so sad that mine had flowered, and I had no idea! Thanks for the tip!

  4. 4
    Jenny Says:

    Oh, lovely idea. I just used fresh fava beans for the first time today, and had added them to my list to grow next year. And now I’ll know I’ll get greens out of it too!
    .-= Jenny´s last blog ..Preparing for Tomatoes =-.

  5. 5
    Terri Says:

    I know what I am having for lunch tomorrow!
    .-= Terri´s last blog ..hello sunshine =-.

  6. 6
    Dee @ Red Dirt Ramblings Says:

    Oh my gosh, I’m salivating. That sounds so good. Never grown fava beans. Must try. Congrats on the Mousie. You deserve it my friend.~~Dee

  7. 7
    Willi Says:

    Meg–It’s so fun finding your first egg. We saved ours, and then my husband accidentally broke it 2 years later. Let’s just say our house smelled bad for several hours!

    Carri–How’d the pesto turn out? Once I harvest my beans I’m totally trying the pesto idea.

    Amanda–Arugula blossoms are so good and they make a really pretty garnish.

    Jenny–Aren’t the beans such a treat? Kind of a pain to prepare, but so worth it!

    Terri–This is really good with spinach and radish tops, too!

    Dee–You must try favas. My favorite way to have the beans is to make a salad with lemon vinaigrette and toasted marcona almonds. Yum!

  8. 8
    rootaki Says:

    This looks great, Willi! If I had favas in the garden I’d definitely try it. I do have bean thinnings though- if you can eat fava leaves and pea shoots, can you also eat bean leaves or shoots? I put them in the fridge just in case… I hope I can try this with bean leaves as a substitute!

  9. 9
    Silvi Says:

    Really! I didn’t know that either about fava greens. I will be sure to try those out next season. They’re such gorgeous leaves as well with that colour.
    Silvi´s last [type] ..Christmas Gifts

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