I finally tried some of the Lavender I got from Marx Foods! I wasn't sure how to use it, and when I came upon this Rhubarb Lavender Crisp at The Kitchn I knew I'd have to give it a go. My scaled-back version (with 2 servings) used some local rhubarb and a crisp topping that had some coconut in it. I thought I had written down what I had done, but I couldn't find that piece of paper... oops. I served it with coconut milk vanilla bean ice cream, which I highly recommend trying if you haven't yet!! The verdict? I liked it, but I was conservative with the lavender just in case ;) Anyone else have any suggestions on how else I can utilize lavender??
My other forray was into fava beans. Favas, also known as broad beans, are actually a member of the pea family, and could have bean the "magic beans" in the Jack and the Beanstalk tale! If that's not reason enough to try them, fava beans are high in fiber and iron, low in sodium, and contain L-dopa (used in treatment of Parkinson's).
They are a little more cumbersome, as they need to be peeled twice. The first time to take the beans out of the pods (see above), and then to remove the woody outer covering (see below). I read that it should be parboiled after shelling, and while it likely makes the peeling easier, I didn't find it too difficult to just remove the outer layer without this step.
Like other beans, they can be very versatile, I almost grilled them, but decided to try something different with these rich, buttery beans. I browned some spicy Italian chicken sausage (completely optional if you want a vegetarian dish) and set that aside. Next in the pan I sauteed a package of shiitake mushrooms (sliced) in a little bit of EVOO with some garlic and fava beans (the latter two ingredients I added once the mushrooms had cooked down a bit). Then came some cooked pasta (I used Barilla Plus penne) and the cooked sausage, creating a Fabulous Fava Pasta! Ok, enough with the F's!! Hopefully I"ll be back soon with something that starts with a different letter ;) Have a great week!