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Marinated Persian Cucumber & Fava Bean Salad with Fresh Herbs

  • Written by By Amanda Bullat, MS RDN CN Culinary Education Program at 21 Acres

What’s one of the simplest ways to add farm-fresh flavor to your meals? Add a few leaves or sprigs of your favorite seasonal herb! Herbs can be one of the easiest crops to grow, especially for those of us with limited growing space. If you have a window and you have a box that will hold dirt and a little water, you can have a thriving herb garden year round in your windowsill.

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Marinated Persian Cucumber & Fava Bean Salad with Fresh Herbs

1 1/2 pounds Persian cucumbers
1 pound fava beans
1/2 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Grape seed oil
1 large or 2 medium spring onions
Fresh herbs including: mint, basil, tarragon, sumac

To Make the Favas: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and season with plenty of salt (salt like the sea!).  In the meantime, remove the fava beans from the pods.  Prepare an ice bath, and when the water boils, blanch the favas for 3-4 minutes until just cooked through.  Immediately plunge them into the ice water and allow to cool completely.  Once they’re cooled, slip the favas from the skins (discard the skins). 

Break or cut the cucumbers into 1 inch irregularly shaped pieces and put them into a mixing bowl.  Toss the cucumbers with the sugar and salt, then transfer them to a colander.  Put the colander into the mixing bowl to allow the cucumber juice to drain into the bowl.  Let the cucumbers sit for 20-30 minutes.  In the meantime, thinly slice the onions and pick the herbs.  Toss the cucumbers, favas, onions, and herbs with the oil and vinegar.  Check the seasoning.  Garnish with a sprinkling of sumac.

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