Broad bean, feta and sage crostini

Broad beans (fava beans for American readers) come into season in Britain in June. This recipe comes from The Kitchen Garden section of my latest book National Trust Simply Baking.  Try serving them here as a nibble with drinks or as part of a summer picnic.  You can make both the crostini and the topping in advance 

Makes about 20 crostini

CROSTINI

½ sourdough baguette

1 fat clove garlic, cut in half

1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

BROAD BEAN TOPPING

200g/7oz shelled broad beans

1 small clove garlic, finely chopped

2 teaspoons finely shredded fresh sage leaves

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

85g/3oz barrel-cured feta cheese, crumbled

1-2 tablespoons lemon juice

salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

1  Preheat the oven to fan 180ºC/gas 5.  Cut the bread into about twenty 1cm/ ½ inch thick slices.  Rub with the cut clove of garlic and drizzle with olive oil.  Place on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until crisp and golden .  Cool on a wire rack.  Once cold, store the crostini in an airtight tin if not using within a few hours.

2  To make the topping, drop the broad beans into a pan of boiling unsalted water.  Return to the boil, cover and simmer for 2-3 minutes or until tender, then drain and cool under cold running water.  Pop each bean out of its pale green skin to reveal the bright green inner kernel.

3  If you have a pestle and mortar, gently crush the broad bean kernels, in batches, aiming for a crumbly, rough texture rather than a smooth paste.  Transfer to a mixing bowl.  Put the garlic, sage and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the mortar.  Gently crush and mix into the broad beans.  Mix in the crumbled feta cheese.  Add the lemon juice to taste, along with the remaining olive oil.  Season to taste.  If not serving immediately, cover and chill.

4  If you don’t have a pestle and mortar, roughly crush the beans with a potato masher, and crush the garlic and sage with the back of a spoon.

5  Shortly before you’re ready to serve, bring the broad bean mixture up to room temperature and spoon on to your crostini.

 

 

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