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Tagliatelle with Fava Beans & Herbs

Tagliatelle with Fava Beans & Herbs


  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups fresh shelled fava beans

  • 2 tbsp. EVOO

  • 2 medium leeks, trimmed and halved lengthwise, then thinly sliced crosswise, or 1 bunch spring onions, whites and light greens, thinly sliced 

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped

  • ½ cup white wine

  • 1 cup (packed) fresh mint and parsley combined, finely chopped

  • ½ cup (loosely packed)

  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced

  • 1 lb. tagliatelle

  • 3 tbsp. butter

  • 1 cup Pecorino Romano, Parmigiano-Reggiano, or a combination of both


  • Step 1

    Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil for the favas and a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Prepare an ice bath for the favas.

  • Step 2

    Add the favas to the medium pot of boiling water. Boil for 5 minutes, then drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Transfer the favas to the ice bath. Drain and peel the favas. In a food processor or blender, puree half of the favas with the reserved water.

  • Step 3

    Heat a large skillet over medium. Add the EVOO, two turns of the pan. Add the leeks and garlic and cook, stirring often, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the wine; bring to a simmer and cook, 1 to 2 minutes, until slightly reduced. Stir in the fava puree, the remaining whole favas, the chopped herbs, and the lemon zest. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.

  • Step 4

    Salt the large pot of boiling water, add the pasta, and cook 1 minute less than the package directions. Reserve about 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, then drain the pasta. Stir the pasta water into the sauce, then add the pasta, lemon juice, butter, and cheese. Toss until coated.

  • Step 5

    Serve the pasta in shallow bowls.