My broad beans are very nearly ready(pictured), which is great. The first proper bit of new greenery so far this year.
However, in line with most years, I’ve grown loads and loads of broadies. At least this spring I’ve managed to stagger the plants. Even so, I’ll be up to my neck in ‘em within a couple of weeks.
I’m not alone, it seems. Everyone gets carried away with broad beans. Everywhere I look at the allotments there are whole rows of the plants. The first glut of 2011 awaits.
So, what to do with all these little beans. Broadies are pretty standard fare, right?
Well, I used to think about this. Boil them with some potatoes and serve with meat or fish. Then I had a hunt around and found the following recipe ideas (plus one of my own that I’m quite proud of):
1) Cook Eat Blog’s Broad Bean Falafels
These are really tasty as a simple dinner tucked into a pitta bread, salad leaves and yoghurt.
Another bonus is that the other main ingredients are all in the season with the broad beans: spring onions, garlic, parsley, and best of all, the mint.
2) Yotam Ottelenghi’s Broad Bean Burgers
These burgers are similar to the Nordic Diet beetroot ones and just as delicious. Takes a little effort, but well worth it, especially if you’re lucky enough to be using freshly dug baby new potatoes as well.
I haven’t tried barbequing them yet but very tempted to see what happens…
3) My Broad Bean, Mint and Goat’s Cheese Spread-Type Thing
I’m fortunate to live near the Springstep Goat’s Dairy, and they make the most gorgeous, softest goat’s cheese I’ve ever tasted. I love to bash it up with some boiled broad beans and chopped mint for a really luxurious sandwich filling.
4) Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Broad Beans on Toast
I have to confess that I love baked beans on toast. I have it at least once a week. Baked beans are like a meal in a tin.
But come June time, I get all high and mighty and ditch the tins and go for this simple, but yummy supper.
I’m all for quick meals this time of year when the sun’s out until late and this one’s a real winner.
5) BBC Good Food’s Broad Bean and Pea Humous
My peas are behind everyone else’s this year, mainly due to a wanton attack by the local slug population, so I’m going to have to wait before I can mix them with my broad beans for this simple but great tasting humous.
It’s particularly good with a few early carrots for dipping.
One thing I love about eating allotment grub is the challenge of making use of the seasonal gluts that always seem unavoidable.
I think this year I could be on for even more broad beans than usual, so if anyone else has got an interesting recipe, please send it my way!