Monday, June 16, 2008

Fava Bean, Asparagus, and Arugula Salad with Shaved Pecorino (Page 135)

  • Date: Friday, June 6, 2008 -- 8pm
  • Location: Somerville, MA
  • Kitchen: Matty's Apartment
  • Fellow Chef: Matty
  • Recipe Rating: A

I saw some fava beans in the market a couple weeks ago, so I jumped at the chance to make this recipe. This salad was excellent. There was a lot of fussiness going on here: the fava beans had to be shelled, then blanched, then individually peeled. The artichokes were super thinly sliced, then the tips were blanched, etc... It was fussy enough that the whole time I was making it I was thinking, "This can't possibly be worth the fuss." But, I am happy to admit that I was wrong. It was delicious! The fava beans were perfect with the raw asparagus stems, and the peppery arugula was great with both of them. The salad was dressed very simply with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and that was just right. The shaved cheese was a rich, salty counterpoint to the simply prepared vegetables. Basically, it was great. On top of it all, it was nice looking. As far as salads go, this one was definitely a winner. Fava beans aren't easy to fine, and they are a pain in the ass to prepare, but it was worth it!

The recipe is here. The recipe online is the same as the one in The Book except that the one online also contains the following useful warning: "Be aware that fava beans can cause a potentially fatal food intolerance in some people of Mediterranean, African, and Pacific Rim descent." Good to know!

Hello from Denmark! Aside from having some serious jetlag, Copenhagen has been awesome so far. Mike, Jenny, and I had uneventful travels. The plane we took from Boston to Amsterdam was shockingly small for such a long flight. Usually on a trans-Atlantic flight each row is 2-4-2 seating, but this plane was 3-3. In fact, the plane we had for the one hour Amsterdam to Copenhagen flight was just as big as the one we took across the Atlantic. Very weird. One result is that it just felt like any other flight. Usually traveling to Europe has some weight to it -- it feels like an event -- but this time it didn't seem so momentous. We made it safely though, arriving last night just in time to grab some dinner and go to bed! Today we had many hours of workshop lectures and problem sessions. The talks so far have been great. This first week of my two-week European math adventure is aimed at the younger people (like myself!), and rather than having lots of disjoint talks it is composed of two lecturers giving mini-courses. Both lecturers are really good, and talking about interesting topics, so it seems guaranteed to be a great program all week!

So mathematically things are good, and from what I have seen so far Copenhagen is beautiful! I went running tonight along this series of lakes, and it was just gorgeous. The weather was cool (a welcome relief after running in hot, humid Boston weather), which made a 4 mile run just fly by. After my run I ate some good Thai food -- a perfect evening! Now, I am off to bed to try to sleep off some of this jetlag... I am hoping to be a little more awake tomorrow than I was today.

No comments: