I’ve had many requests for this Fava recipe. Most of them have been from people who eat this dish at Portuguese festivals and want to make it at home. The dish is easy to make and if you prefer a vegetarian version of this recipe, simply leave out the meats and use vegetable broth.
Fava beans have been around since 6000 BC. They have a long tradition of cultivation in Old World agriculture, being among the most ancient plants in cultivation and also among the easiest to grow. Along with lentils, peas, and chickpeas, they are believed to have become part of the eastern Mediterranean diet around 6000 BC or earlier. They are still often grown as a cover crop to prevent erosion, because they can overwinter and because as a legume, they fix nitrogen in the soil.
2 pounds chouriço sausage (sliced)
2 (19 oz) cans cooked fava beans
1/2 pound of presunto (chopped into small chunks) optional
1/4 cup olive oil
3 large onions (chopped)
3 garlic cloves (finely minced)
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons crushed red pepper paste
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon salt or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup tomato sauce
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup white wine
2 teaspoons parsley (finely minced for garnish)
In a heavy sauce pan, saute the onion, chourico and presunto in olive oil on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add all the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes and add the fava beans. Cook on low heat for another 30 minutes stirring the pan often. Cook longer if you like the beans softer.
Serve with crusty bread for dipping.