Mixed with fennel flowers and mustard greens, this vert-hued fava bean salad from Chef Roberto Ivan from Piccolo Venice in Venice Beach, California, strikes the perfect harmony between sweet, bitter and earthy.
Fava Bean Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette
8 ounces fresh fava beans
1 bunch fennel flowers
1 bunch mustard greens
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons wild flower honey
6 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 ounces Pecorino cheese, shredded
Clean and shell the fava beans. Place in a pot over high heat and boil for 3–5 minutes. Drain the beans and place into an ice bath. Allow to cool, then drain. Set aside. Rinse the fennel flowers, then toss together the fava beans, fennel flowers and mustard greens in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
To make the dressing, mix together Dijon mustard, honey and Champagne vinegar. Slowly pour in the olive oil while whisking until well combined. Pour over the salad and toss well. Finish with Pecorino cheese. Serves 2.
Pietro Biondi, sommelier at Piccolo Venice, recommends Ermes Pavese’s 2011 Blanc de Morgex et de la Salle from Italy’s Valle d’Aosta. “The palate is fruity with a pleasant, fresh finish,” says Biondi. “It’s excellent for an apéritif and matches well with this salad.”