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Recipe: Minty Fava and Asparagus Salad

Omit the escarole and serve warm as a delicious side dish.

This is a spring salad if ever there was one.  The only non-seasonal items in here are from items that don’t grow in this region (lemons, olives).  This spring green salad (emphasis on green) is light and refreshing but a little different than the standard.  It looks creamy but has a light, delicate flavor.  Some of the ingredients you might not be familiar with include:

Fava beans: For those of you who know what fava beans are, I know what you’re gonna say: they take too much prep time. And its true, favas need to be shelled twice but it’s mindless work so set up a shucking station, find something good on Netflix, and do it!

Green garlic: Basically all we’re talking about here is young garlic.  Still protective against vampires and cancer, but not so pungent.

Minty Fava and Asparagus Salad
Serves 4

  • 1 stalk Green garlic, finely chopped
  • 4 pounds Fava beans (to yield about 2 cups shelled)
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 1 small handful mint
  • 2-3 sprigs dill
  • 1 head escarole, chopped
  • 4 ounces goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup low fat plain Greek yogurt
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and pepper

Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you remove the fava beans from their pod.  Blanche the beans for about 3 minutes, let cool for a minute and remove the tough shells around each bean.  In the same pot, bring an inch or two of water to a simmer and steam the asparagus for a 3-4 minutes or until they’re easily pierced with a fork and bright green.  Roughly chop the asparagus and combine with the fava beans and escarole.

Mix together the goat cheese with freshly ground pepper and separate into 4 servings.

In a food processor or with a hand blender, make the dressing by combining the green garlic, mint, oil, lemon juice, yogurt, sugar, and salt.  If you don’t have a hand blender, you can omit the garlic and mint.  Chop them finely and use to top the salad.

Finally, combine the vegetables, dressing, and goat cheese and toss to coat.


193 calories ∣ 117 calories from fat ∣ 13 g fat ∣ 5 g saturated fat ∣ 11 g carbs ∣ 5 g fiber ∣ 10 g protein ∣ Excellent source of vitamins A, C, K ∣ Folate ∣ Copper

*If you want to cut the fat in this salad, omit the goat cheese and add cucumbers, shredded carrots, and/or shredded beets

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