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Side Dishes

Fava beans and peas, the Spring flavor

fava beans and peas

Fava beans and peas, the flavor of Spring season. Until some years ago I didn’t care, I used to eat peas but was not fond of them. But a couple of years ago I began to appreciate fresh fava beans and this year, maybe because of the quarantine effect, I am really fond of them.

So when I saw this recipe on Corriere della Sera, I didn’t hesitate. And I have also prepared it a week after again, and now I have just ordered fresh fava beans and peas online from my supermarket.

There are two variations, if it may be interesting to you: first, if you don’t have bacon, use raw ham. Second: it is wonderful even without artichokes.

The original name of this dish is vignarola, (vigna=vineyard), because these are plants that used to be planted between the rows in the vineyards, to nourish the soil.

fava beans and peas

How to prepare fava beans and peas with artichokes


  • 2 pounds fresh fava beans (about 1/2 pound when shelled)
  • 2 pounds fresh peas (about 1/2 pound when shelled)
  • 5 artichokes
  • 1/10 pound raw ham or bacon
  • 1 onion
  • lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil


  1. Shell fava beans and peas.
  2. Cut the onion thinly and the ham (or bacon) in cubes.
  3. Clean the artichokes and then cut them in halves, then in halves again and again, getting 8 wedges. Put them in a bowl with water and lemon juice, to avoid getting dark.
  4. Put oil in a capacious pan and add the onion. Let it cook in medium-low gas until tender.
  5. Add artichokes and let them cook for 7/10 min, adding little water.
  6. Add fava beans and more water, if necessary.
  7. After 5 more minutes, add peas and let cook for about 15 minutes. Being fresh they don’t need a long cooking time. Taste to find your perfect cooking.
  8. Add salt, pepper and serve. It is good warm or at room temperature.
  9. Buon appetito!


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