If you're wondering how to use broad beans this summer, why not follow Monica's lead and include them in a delicious guacamole for added crunch.
When my Riverford
box arrived last Tuesday, the first thought that came to mind was “barbecue”. Bell peppers, courgettes and mushrooms would make good fodder for kebabs, while cabbage, carrots and onion could be turned into a coleslaw. It seemed almost meant to be. But there was one challenge: broad beans.
I didn’t notice them at first, lurking at the bottom of the box. But when I found them - nestled underneath the cabbage - they threw my barbecue idea for a loop (that’s not to say that a veg box requires you to use up its entire contents in one go, but it sort of became a fun mission).
A large proportion of my meals involve avocado, and when barbecues are concerned, their typical form factor is guacamole, either as a tasty starter or as a companion to grilled veggies (especially when they’re grilled with chilli powder and lime). I decided to riff on my usual guacamole technique by adding broad beans to the mix. I coarsely mashed the broad beans so that the “guacamole” had some nice texture, then added avocado (obviously), lemon, garlic, salt and pepper. You could add mint or other herbs, too, but I kept it simple - this was all about the broad beans for me!
The bonus to this “guacamole" is that it helps stretch the broad beans a bit - if you’ve ever shelled and double-podded broad beans, then you know that what can seem like a whole lot of broad beans at the start often winds up as just a small handful of precious beans. They’re still worth every effort, though.
For the record, we ended up grilling the cabbage and carrots, too, and served it all with the broad bean guacamole, plus homemade bread to pile it all onto. A perfect summer meal, made almost entirely out of vegetables.
Broad Bean Guacamole
100g broad beans (after being shelled and double-podded)
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
salt and pepper
Coarsely mash the broad beans with a mortar and pestle. Add the avocado and continue mashing until smooth, but still with some texture.
Mix in the lemon juice and garlic. Season with salt and pepper, taste, adding more salt or lemon juice as needed.
For more inspirational ideas, take a look at the broad bean recipes on Great British Chefs.