Thursday, November 24, 2011
Fasolia Ksera (Broad bean salad)
Broad beans are something that I don't cook with often as they take a while to prepare. Time never seems as much of an issue when home-grown produce is in the picture. When my mother in law presented me a big bag of broad beans from her garden, rather than adding them to a dish as a supplementary item, I looked for a recipe that would give them a starring role.
Broad beans, green peas and mint were common themes popping up all over the place, but the man and son aren't particularly fond of mint so I kept hunting further for something different. My searching came to a halt when I found a recipe for Fasolia Ksera, a salad of Greek origin. This caught my eye as it was a combination of broad beans, olives, lemon juice and parsley.
After an initial podding, the starting weight of 600 grams of broad beans dwindled down to 180 grams. The final weight ended up as a measly 100 grams after being blanched and having a second podding. The amount wasn't really sufficient for three people as a side dish and I could have bulked it up with some frozen broad beans, but I wanted to relish the taste of this fresh home grown produce on it's own.
The slight tang of lemon and saltiness from the olives were a perfect match and complimented the beans without being overpowering. We really enjoyed this salad and I was regretful that there wasn't more to go around. Next time I'll definitely be making a double batch!
Fasolia Ksera (Broad bean salad) - Adapted from this recipe
Serves 2 as a side dish
600g fresh broad beans or 180g frozen broad beans
1/4 small red onion, finely diced
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
6 kalamata olives, cut in half
freshly chopped parsley, for garnish
If using fresh broad beans, remove the beans from the pods first.
Bring a pot of water to the boil, add the broad beans and cook for 2 minutes. Drain the beans in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Remove and discard the skins by making an opening with your fingernail and squeezing the broad beans out.
Whisk the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper together in a bowl, Add the broad beans, onion and olives and mix thoroughly. Garnish with fresh parsley.