So... how do fresh fava beans come into that picture, you ask?
Thanks to this blog and my renewed passion for cooking since Pablo was born, I have been really excited to eat seasonally. I blogged about the joy brought by heirloom tomatoes a couple of months ago. More recently, I have been going to farmer's markets or grocery stores like one goes on a treasure hunt. "What am I going to find that's fresh, local, seasonal, and hopefully organic?" Eating/cooking seasonally and being open-minded and eager to discover whatever the seasons bring you, has been one way to live in the present, and be grateful for what it has to offer.
Once again, life lessons in the kitchen... If I can teach myself and my son to go into a store - and into life - with as few expectations as possible, but with an eager open mind and a desire to learn, take in, discover, explore... if I can teach him how rewarding that can be, and that may just be the secret of happiness in life, then I will be content.
So this last week, it was fava beans the present season brought us, and boy were we grateful.
So when my friend Christelle in Normandy mentioned this super simple, yet delicious recipe using the fava beans she often gets in her CSA delivery this time of year, I was sold.
Guinea fowl, named pintade in French, is a very common type of poultry most French families consume regularly.
|In case you're wondering what a guinea fowl looks like...|
Did I ever imagine I would be one day writing about guinea fowl and fava beans? Definitely not. And here I am, loving every minute of it. Throwing the shoulds out my kitchen window, and focusing on what's right there, in front of me.
Have you found something unexpected and seasonal recently that you were excited to cook and try? If not, on your next trip at the market, would you be willing to pick one unfamiliar seasonal produce and experiment with it in the kitchen?
What life lessons have you learned in the kitchen?
Roasted guinea fowl with fava beans
Recipe by my good friend Christelle in Normandy, merci Christelle!
Serves about 4
Ages for babies: This is so simple, it can be given at 6-8 months as a puree, adding some of the cooking juices to obtain desired consistency. After 8 months, fava beans make a perfect finger food (like all beans).
Prep time - 30 minutes (shelling and peeling the beans does take a while... a great activity for meditation, relaxation, or chatting with a good friend!)
Cook time - 45-50 minutes
1 guinea fowl
4 lbs fava beans in pods (yields about 13 oz of cooked beans)
Italian parsley, finely chopped
Salt & pepper
In a Dutch oven, heat some olive oil at medium-high heat and brown the guinea fowl on all sides.
Sprinkle with thyme leaves, parsley, salt & pepper.
Add 1 1/2 cup of hot water, cover and simmer over low-medium heat for about 35 minutes, checking from time to time there's still a little liquid in the bottom of the pan.
Meanwhile, shell and peel the fava beans, by removing the outer skin (see pictures above), so you're left with the darker green bean. (*You could do the shelling/peeling ahead of time, dramatically reducing the prep time on the day you make this).
When the guinea fowl has been cooking for about 35 minutes, add the fava beans in the cooking juices with the guinea fowl, cover and cook for another 10-15 minutes, until the beans are tender.