Buttery fava beans still in its pale green skin are added to sauteed morel mushrooms in this recipe. Crème fraîche, a cultured cream, gives the dish a rich tang. It’s a simple way of enjoying what is arguably the most coveted of spring produce.
When it comes to fresh ingredients, sometimes the simplest recipes are best. That’s what I want to say, but to be honest, I just didn’t want to screw up the morels. It’s one ingredient that makes me nervous in the kitchen and you can bet I went all eagle-eye on the morels as it cooked.
The fragrance released by the sauteed morels, obviously that of a mushroom but much deeper than any others, is nothing short of addictive. It makes you want to risk facial oil burns as you bend over the hot skillet and catch a whiff.
Sautéed Morel Mushrooms and Fava Beans
with Crème Fraîche
makes about 4 to 6 servings
3 pounds fresh fava / broad beans in the pod
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
12 to 15 fresh morels (about 4 ounces), cleaned and halved or quartered lengthwise
1 tablespoon crème fraîche
salt, to taste
- Remove the fava beans from pods and rinse under cold running water. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
- Add the fava beans to the boiling water and simmer just until soft, about 5 to 8 minutes. Drain and reserve.
- Heat the olive oil in a cast-iron or heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add the morel mushrooms and gently cook until soft, stirring occasionally, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the crème fraîche, then the favas, and cook just until the favas are heated through, about 1 to 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt.
Something smells good.