Fava Beans with Manchego Cheese

by Pamela

Fava Beans

Fava Beans and Manchego Cheese

Another sure sign of Spring, aside from those little rolls you’re beginning to find creeping over your pants just as you realize swimsuit season is only 2  months away, is finding fava beans at the farmer’s market.

Fava beans are a simple bean, that when cooked, have a light fresh flavor and a buttery texture.  Of course, that’s after you prepare the beans.  Half way through the prep process of this dish you’ll swear all the work isn’t worth it…trust me…it is.  The beans don’t look like much when their still in their pods.  In fact, they kind of look like old soggy beans.  They have a thick outer covering that needs to be cooked. Once cooked, the beans need to be shelled from their pod then the skin covering the bean itself needs to be removed. Phew!

Eating this simple recipe will make you feel very light (a plus for helping to reduce the nightmare that is pre-bathing suit season) and possibly a bit Italian.  Fava beans have been a favorite dish in Italy for a very long time.

Relationship Advice

While we, women, focus in on our physical shortcomings (our muffin top, jiggly upper arms, that little bit of cellulite on the back of our thighs, or our butt) men don’t zero in so much on the minutia of our bodies.  When they look at us, naked, they’re taking in the whole picture….top to bottom.  If your guy is a boob or a butt man, well then he’s only really focusing on that part.  So stop panicking about the little details.  And if you want to get in shape and lose those jiggly bits, then make sure you’re doing it for yourself and not anyone else.

Serves 4


  • 4 Pounds Fava Beans (in shell)
  • 4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons Lemon Juice (preferably fresh squeezed)
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper (to taste)
  • Coarse Sea Salt (to taste)
  • 1 Ounce Manchego Cheese


Shave Manchego Cheese into thin strips using a vegetable peeler ans set aside.

Add fava beans to a large pot of boiling water.  Blanch for 3-4 minutes.

Remove beans from boiling water and immediately place them into a bowl of ice water.

Leave beans in ice water until they cool enough to be handled.

Break open pods and remove individual beans.

Slip the thick opaque skins off of the beans and place skinned beans into a small bowl.

In a small dish mix olive oil, lemon juice and black pepper together.  Pour over shelled beans and stir to combine.

Divide beans into 4 dishes and top with coarse sea salt and shaved cheese.

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My Man's Belly April 22, 2010 at 9:10 pm

Hi Amy,

The fava beans are perfectly delicious without the cheese. If you want to add anything else to them, you could add a bit of crushed red pepper for a little kick. I eat them all the time without the cheese.

Amy April 22, 2010 at 4:59 am

Pamela, I am doing the Clean program right now. Living without cheese is hard! How would this dish be without the cheese? Still worth it? I have never had fava beans, and am looking to expand my bean palate! Thanks. Amy

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