This recipe was inspired by cazuela de habas, a tasty broad bean recipe from Andalusia, Spain. Every year, I grow a few broad beans in the vegetable garden because – well basically I just love broad beans. Fried broad beans, raw broad beans, broad beans in a soup or broad bean salad. It doesn’t matter to me, I love them all.
The essential ingredients for cazuela de habas are the fresh broad beans, onion, garlic and almonds. You can also add bread to thicken the juice but I don’t do that because I’m gluten free.
Pick or buy some fresh broad beans and separate them into two piles – the tough older beans or the tender younger ones. With the tougher broad beans, take the bean out of the shell and discard the shells, keeping only the bean.
With the tender beans, top and tail and pull off any strings by pulling the top bit that you cut off, downwards. Chop the whole bean into roughly 1 inch long pieces.
You should be left with a pan of roughly half the beans shelled and the other half chopped up with their skins. If all your broad beans are tender, you can use all of them with their skins. Personally I love to have some shelled beans in the final meal.
Take about 15-20 unsalted, raw almonds. In this recipe I actually used Macadamia nuts because I didn’t have any almonds, but the traditional recipe uses almonds and after trying it out with Macadamia nuts I can safely say that almonds are tastier for this Spanish broad bean recipe, plus they’re not as expensive as macadamia nuts.
Soak the nuts for about 30 minutes then remove them from the water (saving the water), and gently fry in a little olive oil.
Be careful not to get distracted and burn the nuts, like I almost did!
Once the nuts are fried, add them to the blender along with the water you saved and grind until you have a white liquid.
Chop 1 large or 2 small onions lengthwise and fry in the pan with 2-3 bulbs of garlic. Add Paprika, cumin and a touch of turmeric and stir.
When the onions are translucent, add the beans to the pan. I also added 2 artichokes, cut into quarters, because I just loooooove artichokes!
Stir fry for a few minutes and then pour on a some water to just cover the beans and sprinkle with salt. Stir and cover with a tightly fitting lid and leave to cook on a medium heat for about 10 minutes.
Check how they’re doing and when they’re almost cooked, add the ground nuts in water to the pan and check the salt level.
Leave to cook for another 10 minutes or until soft and then turn off the heat and allow to stand. Serve in a bowl and squeeze on lemon juice or a dash of white wine vinegar before eating.
A traditional dish from Spain using fresh broad beans and almonds
20 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
50 minTotal Time
5 based on 1 review(s)
- Fresh broad beans
- 1-2 onions
- 2-3 cloves garlic
- Handful of almonds
- Cumin, paprika & turmeric
- Olive oil
- Salt & Pepper
- Prepare the broad beans so that you have a pan of beans, some with the skin on, chopped into 1 inch slices and some removed from their skins, whole.
- Fry the almonds until golden but not burnt and add to the blender along with a little water. Blend until you get a white liquid.
- Slice the onion and fry in a little olive oil with the cloves of garlic and a sprinkle of salt. Add the cumin, paprika and turmeric to the pan and fry for another few moments.
- Put the broad beans into the pan and stir.
- Sprinkle on more salt and a grind of pepper.
- Pour on enough water to cover and bring to the boil.
- Cover with a lid and leave to simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Try the beans to make sure they're cooked.
- Finally add the almond liquid and leave to cook for another 10 minutes.
- Like most soups and stews, the flavour will benefit if you leave it to stand for a while before serving, and the next day it will be even better.
Serve with some fresh lemon juice or a dash of white wine vinegar.