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Fava tendrils have tender oval leaves and spiraled stems that attach to a central hollow stem. They have the flavor of fava beans with the grassy sweetness of the plant's foliage. Their unique sweet flavor lends them to be used fresh in salads or lightly sautéed.
Fava tendrils are available in the spring.
Botanically classified as Vicia faba, Fava beans are a climbing vine with edible leaves, stems, flowers and seeds. The Fava tendrils are the young, thin threadlike stems and leaf shoots of the plant that are used for support as it grows. There are only a certain lineage of legumes that form evolved tendrils: peas, sweet peas and in this case fava beans.
Fava tendrils can be used fresh or treated as a wilting green; utilizing a little heat, olive oil, sea salt and pepper and the greens are transformed into a substantial element of any savory dish.
The earliest and most comprehensive study of tendrils was Charles Darwin's monograph, "The Movement and Habits of Climbing Plants", originally published in 1865.
The fava bean dates back to the European Iron Age. A bean in name only, botanically the fava is a type of vetch. Like the bean, the vetch is also a legume but the vetch is a climbing or twining plant that prefers a cool moist climate and is even tolerant to a light frost, unlike the bean that thrives best in the heat of long and nurturing summer days.
Recipes that include Fava Tendrils. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Wild Greens and Sardines||Yogurt Fava Bean Soup|
|My Recipes||Fava Green, Grapefruit, and Flower Salad|
|LA Weekly Squidink Blogs||Farro with Fava Tendrils, Sheep's Milk Feta, and Herbs|
|LA Weekly Squidink Blogs||Stir Fried Fava Bean Tendrils|
People have spotted Fava Tendrils using the Specialty Produce app for iPhone and Android.
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