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Fava Green Pesto Pasta with Fava Beans

Fava greens, which are the leaves from fava plants, smell and taste just like fava beans.


  • 1 bunch fava greens

  • 1/2 cup EVOO

  • Juice of 1 lemon

  • A couple handfuls of grated pecorino cheese, plus more for serving

  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

  • 2 cloves garlic, pasted

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 pound egg tagliatelle or rice rigatoni

  • 1 cup cooked shelled, peeled fava beans


Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add the greens and boil them 30 seconds, then cold-shock them and drain very, very well. Transfer to a food processor (there should be about 2 cups of packed leaves), add the EVOO, lemon juice, cheese, pine nuts, and garlic, and pulse into a pesto. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Transfer the pesto to a pasta serving bowl.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the boiling water and cook the pasta to al dente (rice pastas cook in 3 to 3 1/2 minutes; egg tagliatelle cook in 6 to 7). Before draining, ladle out about 1 cup of the starchy pasta cooking water and add it to the pesto. Drain the pasta and add to the pesto along with the fava beans, tossing with tongs 1 or 2 minutes for the flavors to absorb. Pass more cheese at the table.

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