“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.
- broad beans 200g, podded
- penne or conchiglie 200g
- olive oil 2 tbsp
- spring onions 4, chopped
- garlic 3 cloves, finely sliced
- red chilli 1, deseeded and finely sliced
- lemon 1, zested
- salted butter a knob
- parmesan or pecorino 30g, finely grated, plus extra to serve
- double cream or crème fraîche 2 tbsp
- mint a large handful, roughly chopped
Head this way for more zesty lemon pasta dishes
- Kcals 769
- Fat 36.2g
- Saturates 16.1g
- Carbs 79.7g
- Sugars 4.5g
- Fibre 13.4g
- Protein 24.3g
- Salt 0.4g