Seasonal local food recipe No.361 – Risotto with broad beans and mint

This fantastic risotto recipe is taken from chef David Eyre’s The Eagle Cookbook: Recipes from the Original Gastropub. We had it for our meal last night; Frank didn’t “shuck” the beans (take them out of their little grey sacs), he cooked the beans in the risotto and it still tasted great!

Serves 5-6 as a starter

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

3kg broad beans (400g podded and shucked weight)
2 litres vegetable or chicken stock
150g unsalted butter
2 onions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
300g Arborio rice
a glass of white wine
a bunch of mint, chopped
75g Parmesan cheese, finely grated
salt and freshly ground black pepper

To shuck the beans drop the podded beans into a pan of boiling salted water and leave for about 30 seconds, then drain and cool them quickly under running cold water. Take a bean in one hand and aim it at a large bowl. Squeeze gently between your forefinger and thumb. The bean will pop out of the membrane and fall into the bowl in two neat halves.

Put the stock in a pan and bring it to simmering point. Gently heat 100g of the butter in a separate pan, add the onions and garlic with a little salt and fry until tender. Do not let them brown. Turn the heat up high and pour in the rice. Stir it with a wooden spoon for about half a minute, coating it with the butter; do not let it stick to the pan.

Add the wine and let it bubble fiercely for about a minute, stirring gently all the time. Reduce the heat and start to add the hot stock in stages. When the rice is done, remove from the heat, add the rest of the butter and cover the pan until it has melted. Stir in the broad beans and mint, then add the Parmesan and some seasoning. Serve immediately.

Seasonal local food recipe No.326 – Hugh’s bruschetta with broad beans and asparagus

I might have been tempted to make this recipe from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Veg Every Day! for lunch today had we not already eaten the broad beans out of this week’s box!

Serves 4

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

12-15 asparagus spears, trimmed
200 g baby broad beans (podded weight)
A bunch spring onions, trimmed
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 large slices sourdough bread (or other robust bread)
1 garlic clove, halved (optional)
Extra virgin olive oil, to trickle
50 g mild, crumbly goat’s cheese
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Bring a pan of salted water to the boil, add the asparagus spears and blanch for two minutes.  Scoop them out and drain.  Let the water come back to the boil.  Now add the baby broad beans and blanch for 30-60 seconds until tender, then drain.

Slice the spring onions on the diagonal into 1-2 cm pieces.  Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, add the spring onions and fry fairly gently for 2-3 minutes, until just beginning to soften.  Cut the asparagus spears into 2-3 cm pieces and add, along with the broad beans, to the spring onions in the pan.  Add salt and pepper and toss the whole lot together over the heat, for just a minute, then take off the heat.

Meanwhile, toast the bread.  Rub very lightly with the cut garlic clove, if you like.  Trickle the toast with a little olive oil.  Crumble the goat’s cheese over the veg in the pan and stir very lightly again.  Pile this veg mixture on to the toast, trickle with a touch more olive oil and serve.

Seasonal local food recipe No.325 – Hugh’s Fish-rizo with broad beans


This is from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Light and Easy. It takes the classic seasonings of chorizo sausage and mingles them with fresh fish to create a gloriously red, richly-flavoured dish.

Serves 4

Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 7-8 minutes

700 g white fish fillets, such as pollack, coley, whiting or haddock skinned and boned
1 Tbsp unsmoked paprika
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
a small pinch of cayenne papper
2 tsps fennel seeds
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 tbsps rapeseed or sunflower oil, plus a little extra for cooking
150 g cooked broad beans, skinned if they are large
Juice of 1/2 lemon
sea salt
a little roughly shredded mint (optional)

Check the fish for pin bones, prising out any you find with tweezers, then cut into roughly 2 cm chunks.  Put into a bowl with the spices, garlic and oil.  Add a pinch of salt.  Turn together and leave for half an hour in the fridge.

Heat a large frying pan or wok over a medium-high heat.  Add a trickle more oil, then the fish, and cook, tossing often, for 4-5 minutes, until cooked through.  Stir in the broad beans and cook for another minute.  Squeeze over the lemon juice and remove from the heat.  Taste and add more salt if needed.

Divide between bowls and serve, with some fresh mint sprinkled over if you like.  Serve with rice, flatbreads or potatoes if you want a heartier supper.

Seasonal local food recipe No. 289 – Broad bean and feta frittata


This is a deliciously simple summer dish which can be eaten hot or cold. It’s ideal for a picnic or lunch in the garden. There are many versions, this one is from Valentine Warner at BBC Food

Serves: 2

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes

200g broad beans (podded weight)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small red onion, peeled, chopped (or spring onions)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 large free-range eggs
100g feta cheese, crumbled
small bunch fresh mint leaves (or parsley), chopped

Cook the broad beans in a pan of boiling, salted water for 2-3 minutes, or until tender. Drain well, then refresh in cold water. When the beans are cool enough to handle, peel away the outer skins, if you want to.

Heat the oil in a small ovenproof frying pan over a low heat. Add the onion and season with a pinch of salt. Fry for 8-10 minutes, or until softened but not browned.

Meanwhile, preheat the grill to its highest setting. In a bowl, whisk the eggs until well combined and full of air, then season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

When the onions have softened, increase the heat to medium and pour in the beaten eggs. Sprinkle over the crumbled feta, mint or parsley leaves and cooked broad beans. Leave the pan on the heat for 2-3 minutes, or until the underside of the egg mixture is pale golden-brown. (NB: Do not stir the mixture.)

Transfer the pan to the grill and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, or until the top side of the egg mixture is firm and pale golden-brown. Place a large plate upside-down over the pan, then turn the pan over so that the omelette falls onto the plate. Cut it into wedges and serve with crusty white bread.

Seasonal local food recipe No.238 – Broad bean hummus Ⓥ


Another way to serve broad beans which is specially good if you’re on a nut-free diet. The beans replace the usual tahini in a hummus recipe. This comes from the Recipes without… series in Guardian Food & Drink.

Serves: 4
Cooking/preparation time: 15-20 minutes

200g fresh broad beans, podded
110g tin chickpeas
50ml water
30ml olive oil
15ml lemon juice
¼ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp salt

Cook the beans. Drain and allow to cool, then pop them out of their skins.

Place the skinned beans in a food processor with the remaining ingredients. Blend for about three minutes until you have a smooth paste. Add more salt if needed. Serve with flatbread.

Seasonal local food recipe No.237 – Crushed broad bean bruschetta Ⓥ


A delicious snack or starter from Riverford Organic Farms via West Country FoodLover magazine.

Serves: 4

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes

500g broad beans (weight in their pods), podded
1 lemon
good olive oil
2 tbsp grated parmesan or vegan equivalent + more to serve
small bunch mint leaves, finely chopped
pinch of dried chilli flakes
thin slices of sourdough/ciabatta
1 garlic clove, peeled  

Boil the beans in salted water for 3-5 mins until tender, then mash roughly with a fork. Finely zest the lemon, then squeeze the juice of one half into the beans. Stir in 4 tbsp olive oil, the lemon zest, parmesan, mint and chilli. Season with salt and pepper to taste (you may want a little more lemon juice too).

Toast, grill or griddle the bread, then rub with a cut clove of garlic. Drizzle with some olive oil, then pile on the broad bean mixture and grate over a little more cheese to serve.         

Seasonal local food recipe No.228 – Hugh’s baby carrot and broad bean risotto


This is from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Veg Every Day! and is a perfect summer risotto.  I often use chicken stock instead of vegetable stock.

Serves 4

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 35-40 minutes

1 tbs olive or rapeseed oil
40 g butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
800ml hot vegetable stock
200g risotto rice
100ml white wine
250-300g baby carrots, scrubbed and halved or quartered lengthways
150g baby broad beans
20g parmesan cheese, finely grated
A handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
olive or rapeseed oil to serve

Heat the oil and 25 g butter in a large pan over a medium heat.  Add the onion and fry gently for 8-10 minutes, until softened.  Stir the rice into the onion and cook for a minute or two, then stir again.  Add the wine and bring to a simmer.  Cook for a few minutes, stirring from time to time, until the wine is absorbed.

Start adding the hot stock a ladleful at a time, stirring frequently and add more stock as it is absorbed.  It should take about 20-25 minutes for the stock to be absorbed and for the rice to be cooked but still al dente. Add the carrots when the rice has been cooking for about 12 minutes; put the broad beans in about 5 minutes from the end of the cooking time.

When the rice and vegetables are cooked, turn off the heat.  Add the cheese and the remaining butter, cover and leave for a couple of minutes.  Add most of the parsley and season to taste.  Serve in bowls with the remaining parsley scattered over and trickle over a little oil.

Seasonal local food recipe No.194 – Allegra’s tortellini in brodo d’estiva

Another easy 10-minute meal – vital in the present heatwave – this time from Allegra McEvedy (via Guardian Cook). Try it with with the peas, broad beans and basil in Camel CSA’s veg boxes this week.

She says: This has long been my top fall-back supper: warming, nutritious, quick and indisputably yum-a-licious. Without meaning to sound like a smartypants… a decent [homemade] stock is both the vital background and making of this dish – cube or concentrate just won’t do on this occasion.”

Serves 2
Preparation / cooking time: 10 minutes

500ml chicken stock
150g ready-made tortellini
A few slices of red chilli (optional)
2 handfuls of seasonal veg such as mange tout or sugar snaps, roughly sliced; courgette, diced; peas or broad beans; french beans cut into batons; or broccoli cut into tiny florettes
A large handful of summer herbs, such as basil, mint and parsley
Lemon juice, to taste

To finish
Parmesan, grated
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and black pepper


Warm up the stock and, once steaming, drop in the tortellini and pop a lid on the pan. After 3-4 minutes, and when just cooked, add the veg of your choice. When the stock has come back to a simmer, turn the heat off and stir in most of the herbs, some seasoning and a little lemon juice to taste.

Ladle into warm, wide bowls and finish with a flourish of grated parmesan, a drizzle of olive oil and the last of the herbs.

Seasonal local food recipe No.193 – Hugh’s baby broad beans (or peas) with chorizo

This is a 10-minute meal from Hugh-Fearnley-Whittingstall via Guardian Cook that uses the beans or peas from Camel CSA’s veg boxes this week. Hugh says: “Broad beans are among my favourite vegetables and this dish makes the most of them. Fresh baby peas are a great, similarly fast-cooking alternative, and you could use bacon in place of the chorizo.”

Serves 2
Preparation / cooking time: less than 10 minutes

250g baby broad beans
1 tbsp olive oil
100g cooking chorizo, sliced or diced
Sourdough, toasted


Bring a pan of salted water to the boil, throw in the broad beans or peas and cook for just 2 minutes, then drain them well. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a small frying pan over a medium heat, add the chorizo and fry for a minute or so until lightly crisp. Throw the drained beans or peas into the pan with the chorizo and toss for a minute, so the beans are heated through and coated with the delicious, spicy red oil. Serve at once, with bread, or piled on to toasted garlic-rubbed sourdough as a bruschetta.

Seasonal local food recipe No.149: Hugh’s risoni with baby peas (or broad beans), bacon and garlic


A really quick and easy one for families on half-term holiday. It works brilliantly with the mangetout peas or broad beans in Camel CSA’s veg boxes this week.

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall says: “This is a fantastic recipe for super-fresh homegrown baby peas or beans. Risoni pasta, also known as orzo, is a lovely, rice-shaped type that I find particularly satisfying, especially when the ingredients it’s served with are also small.”

Serves two

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes

150g risoni (or other small pasta)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
150g baby peas and/or broad beans
1 tbsp rapeseed, sunflower or olive oil
3 rashers unsmoked streaky bacon (or pancetta), cut into small dice
1 clove garlic, peeled and cut into slivers

Bring a pan of water to a boil for the pasta, add a good dose of salt and then the pasta. Cook as suggested on the pack, and throw in the peas and/or beans for the last two minutes of the cooking time. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the bacon and cook for five minutes, stirring often, until crisp. Add the garlic for the last minute or so. Take the pan off the heat. Drain the pasta and peas, tip into the bacon pan and toss. Season to taste, and serve.

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