If you have never had the pleasure of trying fresh fava beans, an easy way to incorporate them into your dinner is to make a fresh summer succotash. Top the succotash with a piece of crispy seared fish, and you have a very satisfying meal. Succotash is an American dish traditionally made with corn and lima beans. It was popular during the great depression because of its relatively inexpensive ingredients. Through the years it has been modified in all sorts of ways, taking on the preferences and cultures of the people making it.
Fava beans were introduced to me early on, but in the dried form. Growing up, my dad, from Egypt, would often make a dish called Ful Medames. This is a traditional Egyptian breakfast and Egypt's version of street food, sold everywhere and cheaply on the streets of Cairo. It is tasty, filling, full of protein and most importantly, affordable. It consists of a bowl of slow cooked fava beans, seasoned with garlic, onion, cumin and coriander. My dad would fill the crock pot at night with dried fava beans and spices and it would simmer all night long until morning when the beans were fragrant and tender. Served in bowls and drizzled with olive oil, a squeeze of lemon, chopped parsley and fresh diced tomatoes, scooped up with toasty pita bread, it was strangely comforting and delicious.