I signed up to write this week’s newsletter about a month ago, anticipating being able to share with you all my first-hand account of what has been happening around the farm and highlighting my favorite produce that makes its debut this time of year. Instead, I find myself having been out of the field for 2 1/2 weeks now, writing to you with an ice pack on my arm and dancing feet still adapting to being idle after an elbow injury that required surgery and a lengthy recovery. Though I have to take a little time away from the farm, I have been spending hours in my kitchen making one-armed magic out of our amazing fruits and vegetables, nourishing myself back to health with the aid of farm-fresh produce.
Last week, I shared a birthday celebration with a fellow Red Dog farmer. We felt truly celebrated by our fellow farm friends and collectively found about 7 different ways to honor the beloved strawberry. Punchy sumac roasted strawberries and yogurt cream, adorable Funfetti cupcakes with strawberry décor, strawberry-harissa ketchup slathered on burgers and hotdogs, festive strawberry margaritas, fresh arugula salad with basil, strawberries, goat cheese and walnuts… all enjoyed under the strawberry full moon.
I could continue on the topic of strawberry adoration, but there is another far less celebrated item we have been seeing a lot of that I get equally as excited about as spring turns to summer: the fava bean. I am not a big fan of most dried and cooked beans, so they mark the beginning of my yearly summer love affair with fresh beans. There is something so connected about the experience of sitting on my porch shelling these beauties from their fluffy casing, an activity best enjoyed with the company of a good friend. From there it’s into a pot of boiling water for one minute and these earthy, sweet, buttery beans are ready to be enjoyed as is or added to your favorite recipe. (Note: sliding them out of their pale, white skin to reveal the vibrant green bean inside is purely optional. They taste wonderful either way.)
If you haven’t yet fallen in love with these tender and bright delights, I encourage you to give them another chance with two of my favorite recipes: Pasta and Fried Zucchini Salad with Favas and Fava Bean Kuku, aka Persian Fritatta.