Friday, November 16, 2012


serves two 

3 or 4 young, slim leeks  
6 slices unsmoked bacon
1 thick slice butter
1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
2 lb. fava beans in their pods
2 loosely packed tablespoons fresh tarragon leaves, chopped
a handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped 
Bring a deep pan of water to a boil. Wash and thickly slice the leeks. Remove the rind from the bacon slices and cut each slice into finger-thick strips. Warm the butter in a shallow pan and add the strips of bacon. Let the bacon color lightly in the hot butter until its fat is starting to turn pale gold, then add the sliced leeks and the garlic clove. Partially cover with a lid and let the leeks soften but not color.
While the bacon and leeks are cooking, shell the beans and add them to the boiling water. Salt the water and let the beans cook for four or five minutes, until tender. Drain and rinse in cold water until cool enough to skin. Leave the tiniest of beans unskinned, but it is probably better to skin anything larger than a thumbnail-just squeeze each bean between thumb and finger and pop it out of its skin.

When the leeks and bacon are soft and fragrant, stir in the tarragon, parsley, and the drained and skinned beans, then season. Stir gently, allow to heat through for a minute or two, then serve on warm plates.

bacon recipe courtesy of:  Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch by Nigel Slater, Ten Speed Press, 2010, p. 296

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