Gardening Magazine

Broad Beans (again)

By Mwillis
The Broad Bean is one of the few vegetables that seems to have remained predominantly seasonal - in other words, apart from the frozen ones that are available all the time, they only appear in the shops during a certain season. For us here in the UK that season is late Spring / early Summer. Jane and I are not great fans of frozen veg, so we tend to take full advantage of the fresh Broad Beans when they are available. In my little veg plot I am unable to devote much space to growing them, but they appear every year on my Growing-list. Harvest time is -- NOW!
Broad Beans (again)
My first harvest, a few days ago, was 552g of the "Stereo" beans, about which I have recently written in detail, but this batch includes not only another 390g of "Stereo", but also 811g of "Witkiem Manita".

Broad Beans (again)

"Stereo"


Broad Beans (again)

"Witkiem Manita"

The basket of "Witkiem Manita" looks by far the larger of the two, but funnily enough once they are podded it will probably be the smaller (in terms of weight). The big pods have lots of padding, whereas the smaller pods of "Stereo" will be much more tightly filled. This type of bean should not be left to get too big, because they can easily become tough and leathery. It's best to pick them at the right time and if necessary keep them in a plastic bag in the fridge. Broad Beans will happily keep for at least a week that way.
The pods of "Witkiem Manita" are quite short by Broad Bean standards - they are definitely not a "longpod" variety. Most of mine are about 20cm long.
Broad Beans (again)

The pods of "Stereo" are usually about 10 - 12cm long, and much slimmer.

Broad Beans (again)

"Stereo"

Does anyone know whether you can make anything edible with Broad Bean pods, like you can with pea pods? It seems such a waste to put such a high proportion of one's harvest straight on to the compost heap.
Since we currently have BBs available, who would like to give me a recipe for cooking them? It would be nice if you would share with me your favorite way(s) of using them.
Here's a photo of some ingredients that went into a meal Jane cooked last weekend. Broad Beans, Sherry, Toasted Almonds, Lemon, Smoked Paprika, Marjoram... Guess which country's cuisine we're talking about!
Broad Beans (again)

The dish was a Spanish-style tortilla - a bit like an omelet - filled with Broad Beans braised in sherry. A very different way of using the beans, and very delicious too! The recipe came from Holland and Barrett's "Healthy"  magazine.

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