I have seriously neglected the Berry Diaries over the past few weeks whilst in South Africa on holiday and in the process of setting up my own Physiotherapy Practice here in London! I hope that I am able to dedicate some more time to write about the things that interest me (and hopefully you too) over the next while...
Whilst at home, my Aunt Judy asked me if I have ever made anything with Broad Beans as she has grown some on their Farm, and showed me them in her Vegetable Garden. I had heard of them, but hadn't ever cooked anything with them.
Yesterday whilst I was browsing in my favouritest food shop, Whole Foods Market, I saw some broad beans and decided I had to give them a try. I also bought some haloumi cheese whilst I was there, and so when googling broad bean recipes this morning, I found one with haloumi on the Abel and Cole website, it was the obvious choice.
Broad Bean, Pea and Mint Salad with Warm Haloumi
500g broad beans, shelled
500g frozen peas, thawed
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
350-500g halloumi, sliced into bite-size pieces
2-3 handfuls cherry tomatoes, halved
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
optional additions: black olives, chilli, roasted peppers, cherry peppers, red onion, shredded spinach
Blanch broad beans in a medium saucepan of boiling salted water 3 minutes; transfer to a bowl of ice water and peel the skin off the beans. Drain. Place the broad beans, peas, olive oil and mint in a large frying pan. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring, until warmed through, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place the cherry tomatoes in the bottom of a large bowl, and pour the bean mixture on top; cover and set aside. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add the halloumi pieces and fry until golden, about 1 minute per side. Add the cheese into the salad, squeeze over some lemon juice, toss to combine, and serve.
The salad was delicious, and definitely one that I will make again! I initially thought that the shelling, blanching, cooling and then peeling of the beans would take ages, but it was really quite simple!
According to Reinhard, in her book Superfoods, they are really good for you too!
Broad Beans are high in protein, manganese, folate, and phytosterols. they are a good source of vitamins A and C, fiber, niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, iron, potassium, magnesium and copper.
Studies have suggested that broad beans will provide protection against cardiovascular disease and may have cholesterol lowering effects too.
And apparently they are really easy to grow at home too!