This is my straightforward interpretation of a classic Roman springtime dish, in which a handful of spring vegetables are gently stewed together until they have lost their bright green color ... but not their green flavor. Asparagus and fava beans are typical, and I like to add whatever else looks good at that time—English peas, sugar snaps, spring onions.

 

By / Photography By Laura Dart & A.J. Meeker | February 15, 2018

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound spring onions, trimmed (including 1 inch off of the green tops), bulbs quartered or cut even smaller if they are big
  • 3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 2 pounds fava beans in their pods
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 pound sugar snap peas, cut into %-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, tough ends trimmed, stalks cut on an angle into %-inch slices, tips left whole
  • 1/2 head escarole or other sturdy and tasty green, root end trimmed, cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces, washed really well
  • 1/4 cup lightly packed mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Finely grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving

Preparation

Cut the spring onions into 11/2-inch lengths (you want to have a bit more than 2 cups).

Stack the prosciutto slices, roll them into a cylinder and slice crosswise into thin strips. Then cut across the coils of the strips so that you’re chopping the prosciutto into small bits. (This process is easier if you chill the prosciutto in the freezer for a few minutes first.) You want around 3/4 cup.

Shell, blanch and peel the fava beans.

Heat A cup olive oil in a large Dutch oven or other big heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the garlic, onions and prosciutto. Reduce the heat, season lightly with salt and pepper and cook until the onions are soft and fragrant but not browning at all, 12 to 15 minutes.

Add the fava beans, snap peas, asparagus, escarole and 1 cup water. Cover and cook at a simmer until the vegetables are very soft and the flavors are all blending together, 15 to 25 minutes. You want the consistency to be slightly brothy; though most of the liquid will come from the vegetable juices, add a bit more water if need be.

Add the mint, parsley, lemon zest and lemon juice. Taste and adjust the seasoning so the stew is rich and savory. Drizzle on a bit more olive oil.

Serve on its own or over pasta. Finish individual plates with more olive oil and pass the Parmigiano at the table.

About this recipe

Vignole is fantastic the second day because all those flavors have had a chance to develop. And it’s great with some short pasta, such as ditalini, or some farro stirred in. Don’t forget the grilled bread on the side and a drizzle of olive oil.

Excerpted with permission fom Six Seasons by Joshua McFadden (Artisan Books, 2017.)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound spring onions, trimmed (including 1 inch off of the green tops), bulbs quartered or cut even smaller if they are big
  • 3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
  • 2 pounds fava beans in their pods
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 pound sugar snap peas, cut into %-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 pound asparagus, tough ends trimmed, stalks cut on an angle into %-inch slices, tips left whole
  • 1/2 head escarole or other sturdy and tasty green, root end trimmed, cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces, washed really well
  • 1/4 cup lightly packed mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Finely grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving
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