Yet another sign the spring season has arrived comes with the first fava bean harvest of the season.
Currently available at all weekly Santa Barbara Certified Farmers markets from several local producers, these young tender beans are loaded with flavor. They’re excellent over a salad, mixed into rice or pasta dishes, in soups or served as a simple side dish.
This week I prepared a fava bean crostini as the Fix of the Week on the next page.
A nutrient-rich food source, the younger small beans can be enjoyed pod and all while the mature bean pods are discarded. When cooked, the beans deliver a sweet and earthy flavor and a buttery texture.
Certified organic is available. Price averages $4 per pound.
Over this past year, oregano has come to be one of my favorite herbs to use in moderation in an array of preparations.
Delivering a nice earthy flavor, it’s ideal for adding to marinades or rubs for meats, incorporated into pasta sauces and salads, in salad dressings, and roasted vegetable dishes.
Grown by a number of local organic farmers, including BD Dautch of Earthtrine Farm in Ojai, this culinary delight is currently available at all weekly Santa Barbara certified farmers’ markets.
Oregano is a good source of iron, manganese, vitamin K, fiber and calcium. It also contains omega-3 fatty acids. Price averages $2 per bunch.
‘Blue Truck’ Sauvignon Blanc
This is an excellent new farmers’ market find, brought to the weekly Saturday Santa Barbara and Tuesday Santa Barbara farmers’ markets from the Santa Barbara Pistachio Co.
Their Santa Barbara County-grown grapes in the Cuyama Valley produced this high quality wine, excellent when served with seafood preparations, a charcuterie platter or lighter spring meals.
It’s also a nice wine to simply enjoy chilled on a warm afternoon.
This past week I paired this Sauvignon blanc with some Thai style steamed mussels. Priced at only $20 per bottle, this is a great buy.