Make this broad bean, mint and chilli pasta for a light supper, then check out our broad bean risotto, broad bean linguine, broad bean and mint bruschetta and more broad bean recipes.

“Welcome, welcome – oh, watch that box, we’re still unpacking. And, careful not to trip – we’re sorting out the kitchen floorboards.” That’s what I’d be saying if you were here with me. I couldn’t be starting this column at a more fitting time, given that we have just relocated to a new house away from the city (watch us transform our new space on Instagram @homeandgardenbythesea). For the first time, we have a home with a garden that we hope to fill with fruit trees, flowers, friends, wine and good times.

I’m excited to bring you along on the journey. Right now the whole place is in chaos, a maelstrom of boxes and ingredients spilling out of cupboards because I wholeheartedly failed to follow the golden rule of decluttering before moving. But one thing that is bringing me a sense of calm and control is thinking about the seeds I’m going to sow. Without much time to yet plan a proper kitchen garden, I’m drawn to seeds that can be sown straight into the ground and left pretty much to their own devices. Broad beans are top of that list.

Is there anything more grounding than literally pushing seeds into the earth? It’s a little late in the day but if I swiftly sow these magic little beans, they could be harvested by the end of June. The wonderful thing about broad beans is that you can, if you’re keen, sow them in winter to start harvesting in spring – they’re hardy enough to survive freezing temperatures, so I’ll be doing that next year. But even if my last-minute seeds don’t fruit by June, I know I’ll have some in my veg box. Failing that, there’s always the freezer.

With that in mind, I’ve included a simple but delicious pasta dish that makes broad beans the star, adding a handful of chopped mint (an herb that helps them sing), along with a grating of lemon zest and lick of cream. You could add some crispy smoked bacon lardons, too – they’re always good with broads but I’ve chosen to keep things simple here.


  • 200g broad beans, podded
  • 200g penne or conchiglie
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 spring onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • a knob salted butter
  • 30g parmesan or pecorino, finely grated, plus extra to serve
  • 2 tbsp double cream or crème fraîche
  • a large handful mint, roughly chopped


  • STEP 1

    Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil over a medium heat and cook the broad beans for 2-3 minutes or until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon, reserving the cooking water, and rinse the beans under cold running water to cool. Once cool, peel and transfer to a bowl, discarding the skins.

  • STEP 2

    Bring the reserved cooking water back to the boil, adding a little more salt. Cook the pasta for a few minutes less than the pack instructions or until al dente. Skim off any scum that may rise to the surface as the pasta cooks.

  • STEP 3

    Meanwhile, tip the oil, spring onions, garlic, chilli, lemon zest and a pinch of salt into a large frying pan set over a medium heat and cook for a few minutes until the ingredients start to soften and smell aromatic – they should infuse the oil but don’t let the veg start to colour.

  • STEP 4

    Add the butter and peeled broad beans, and season with some black pepper. Stir to coat everything in the sauce, roughly crushing a few of the beans as you do. When the pasta is ready, add it to the pan using a slotted spoon. Add a couple of spoonfuls of the cooking water, followed by the parmesan or pecorino.

  • STEP 5

    Shake the pan and toss everything together until the sauce is creamy and glossy. Pour in the cream or crème fraîche, stirring to combine, followed by the lemon juice and chopped mint.

  • STEP 6

    Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed, then divide the pasta between warm bowls and top with a little extra cheese to serve.

Head this way for more zesty lemon pasta dishes

Creamy Salmon Pasta

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