• أرز بالفول الاخضر •
A springtime Fava Bean Rice Pilaf featuring creamy favas, authentic spices, and toasted almonds—and done in only 30 minutes!
Fava beans are one of my favorite harbingers of the Spring season. I await their season longing for their earthy taste and creamy texture. In Middle Eastern cuisine, unlike some other Mediterranean cuisines that also cook with favas, we often use the entire fava: pod, beans, and all. If you cook the leathery pods and beans long enough, they will eventually tenderize. I will admit though that the combination of the earthy-tasting pods and the chewy large beans can be an acquired taste. Rest assured, this dish uses only the shelled, tender beans and doesn’t require any long cooking to tenderize. Make things even quicker and easier by using frozen, shelled fava beans!
Serve this Fava Bean Rice Pilaf with a simple salad of diced tomatoes, cucumbers, and fresh herbs. Or, for a more traditional pairing, serve with vegan yogurt—I love it with my homemade soy and cashew milk yogurt, drizzled with some extra virgin olive oil. Also, don’t skip on those toasted almonds! They add a crunchiness and nuttiness that you’re sure to find irresistible.
- 1½ cups rice
- 1½ Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely diced (around 1 cup)
- 1lb shelled fava beans (around 450g), fresh or frozen
- ¾ teaspoon allspice
- ½ teaspoon coriander
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried mint or 1 Tablespoon minced fresh mint
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 or 2 bay leaves
- 1¼ teaspoons sea salt
- black pepper, to taste
- 2¼ cups hot water
- ⅓ cup toasted whole blanched or slivered almonds
- fresh mint leaves
- Rinse and drain the rice 3 times, then cover with lukewarm water and let it soak for at least 10 minutes or more.
- In a nonstick saucepan or pot over medium-high heat, add the oil and sauté the onions with just a pinch of salt until they get soft, about 5 minutes. Add the fava beans and sauté for another 2-3 minutes. While that's going on, drain the rice and have it ready next to you.
- Now add the allspice, coriander, thyme, mint, lemon zest, nutmeg, bay leaf, salt and pepper and stir around for 30 seconds before adding the drained rice and the hot water. Stir gently to incorporate and let it come to a boil with the lid just slightly off the pot. After 5 minutes, you'll notice that the level of broth is now just below the surface of the rice and bubbles are popping through. (If this isn't the case, let it boil a few minutes more.) Cover the pot tightly with the lid and put the heat underneath on the lowest setting possible. Cook undisturbed (no peeking or stirring!) for 22 minutes.
- After 22 minutes have elapsed, remove the lid and gently fold and fluff the rice with a spatula or a rice paddle. Then cover it again and let it sit off the heat for 5 minutes to finish it off.
- While stirring constantly, toast the almonds in a small saucepan with a few teaspoons of oil over medium heat until golden. Garnish the rice with the almonds and mint leaves and serve.
-I often replace the water in this recipe with hot vegetable broth. If you'd like to do the same, just reduce the amount of salt in this recipe.
-I often substitute chopped leeks for the onions for a different nuanced onion flavor.