Sunday, June 12, 2016

Fava Bean and Summer Squash Chickpea Flour Crepes

At last week's Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market, Camas Swale Farm brought a bounty of spring vegetables, including delicate summer squash and fat fave beans.

Fava beans are best when shelled from their pods

and then released from their slightly bitter and tough skins. Peeling fave beans  is a true labor of love, and after all that investment of work they should be treated with reverence.

I decided to pair them with lightly sautéed summer squash and fresh herbs as topping for chickpea flour crepes as a stovetop version of farinata

The batter is simply chickpea flour and water with a bit of salt and olive oil. I found that I needed to keep my crepe pan quite hot and use plenty of olive oil to prevent the crepes from sticking, but once I mastered this, the crepes proved to be the perfect canvas for the fava beans, and a delicious post-market treat.

Chickpea Flour Crepes with Fava Beans and Summer Squash
makes about 4 crepes
Crepe batter
1 cup chickpea flour
1 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp olive oil for batter and more for cooking

Crepe toppings
handful of fave beans
1 or 3 small summer squash
1 Tbsp olive oil
salt to taste
aleppo pepper or red pepper flakes to taste
chopped fresh herbs such as chives and thyme

1. Whisk together the batter ingredients into smooth. Let rest for at least half an hour, or overnight in the refrigerator.

2. Prepare the fave beans. Boil a small pot of salted water. Remove the fave beans from the pods. Blanche the beans in the boiling water for 1 minute and then strain and run under cold water. For each blanched bean, use a paring knife to make a small incision in the outer skin and pop out the bean from the casing with your fingers.

3. Cut the summer squash into 1/4 inch thick half moons or other pieces. Heat a crepe pan or nonstick skillet over medium hight heat. Add one Tbsp olive oil, the summer squash, salt and aleppo or red pepper flakes to taste. Sauté until the summer squash has a bit of brown blistering on its surface but is not yet mushy. Transfer the squash to a bowl.

4. Return the crepe pan to medium high heat. Add a generous amount of olive oil. When the oil is shimmering, pour in about 1/2 cup crepe batter and tip the pan in a circular motion to spend out the batter. Allow the batter to cook until it darkens in color slightly. Then use a spatula to flit the crepe  and cook briefly on the second side. Cook the remaining crepes. 

5. Top the crepes with the sauteed summer squash and fave beans sprinkled with chopped fresh herbs.

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