My mom’s favorite dish is a traditional Lebanese stew of fava beans in yogurt sauce flavored with cilantro or mint pesto and served with rice. Instead of making this, I thought of translating these flavors into an open-faced sandwich, like a bruschetta.
The stalls are filled with fresh fava beans at the neighborhood Middle-Eastern store. Feel free to use frozen ones to save time shelling them.
Cover the toasted bread with a garlicky labneh (yogurt cheese), mash a few fava beans (keeping some whole for good looks), season them with some cilantro pesto. Devour.
INGREDIENTS: 4 servings
- 4 slices of your favorite bread (sourdough works here)
- 1 1/2 cup of yogurt (or a jar of ready-made labneh)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 1/2 cup of fava beans
- 1/4 cup of cilantro pesto (or 1 bunch of cilantro and 6 cloves of garlic)
- Olive oil, as needed
- If using fresh fava beans, shell them and drop them in salted boiling water for 3 minutes; drain and when cool, peel them. Set aside. Mince cilantro leaves fine and mash some garlic cloves with a dash of salt in a mortar till pasty (you need one teaspoon of mashed garlic for this recipe); heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small skillet and gently fry the garlic and cilantro for 10 seconds while stirring with a wooden spoon. Transfer the cilantro pesto to the bowl of fava beans and mix to combine well.
- Line a sieve over a bowl with a coffee filter or a paper towel and drop the yogurt onto the towel; let the yogurt drain for a few hours till it loses most of its whey; transfer the drained yogurt or labneh to a bowl and add half a teaspoon of mashed garlic with salt to the labneh, mixing well. Taste to adjust seasoning.
- Toast the bread in a 300F oven till golden; slather a generous amount of labneh on the bread and top with a generous amount of fava beans. Serve immediately.
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