Fresh Broad Beans, cured pancetta and truffled pecorino fettuccine is the perfect spring dish. A mix of fresh ingredients for a delicate, fresh and elegant dish!
This recipe is my call for spring, a bit the equivalent of the ‘Rain dance’ except it brings the opposite; the sun. This time of the year in Spain it’s the beginning of this delicate and sweet fava/broad beans season, never had such sweet and tasty broad beans than in Catalonia. I have to say though… they look so innocent those little broad beans but to prepare them is a tedious task… Let me explain…
The beans are doubly protected; first by the pod which is about 20cm long (the ones from Catalonia) and then it contains about 8 seeds in which are the actual beans. This shell is comestible and could be simply fried and consumed although if you want the sweet and tender part of the beans you’ll have to open then up one by one. Yes, you’ll get sore fingers after a batch but I assure you the extra work is well worth it! This flavour is to die for although it’s not a powerful one, so you’ll have to go soft on the extras that goes with it, not to add too much otherwise it will kill your beans taste. After all that work… better make them the protagonist of the plate no?
Dry egg fettuccine
As for the pasta, I’ve used those dry egg fettuccine that comes in a nest form. I like those pasta, to me they are the top notch of pasta (except when handmade) from the supermarket. Flat large pasta usually is used with heavy sauce like Ragu, but here you’ll get a simple touch of olive oil to appreciate them fully. For some reason those pasta feel fluffier and lighter than dry pasta and they look exquisite on a plate. I’m no pasta professional, but those are the closest you can get to homemade pasta so for such a delicate tasting dish it’s perfect!
For the extras; a nice cured pancetta with black pepper and truffled pecorino to make the dish “one of a kind”. I mean, of course, you are free to use any type of pancetta or pecorino however those little extras are simply fantastic! Pecorino is quite similar to parmesan although made out of sheep milk which is a taste slightly different and its texture is flakier and softer. As for the pancetta, I ve used a cured one which doesn’t need to be cook really… although I’ve warmed it up in the pan but you could use also a fresh pancetta and cook it with the onions at first.
So let’s bring that spring back!
Fresh Broad Beans, Pancetta and Truffled Pecorino Fettuccine
Makes 2 portions | Preparation: 30 minutes | Difficulty: easy
- 250g broad beans (with shells)
- 20g of cured pancetta cut into brunoise (mini dices)
- 1/4 spring onion cut into brunoise (mini dices)
- pecorino romano (truffled if possible)
- extra virgin olive oil
- 250g dry egg Fettuccine
- Start by doing the hard work; peeling all the fresh broad beans one by one, keeping only the vivid green part
- Add the spring onion to a pan with a little olive oil and salt and cook medium-low heat until soften
- During that time cook the fettuccine into a big pot of salty boiling water (careful they take less time to cook than normal dry pasta)
- Add the small pancetta dices to the onion and cook for a minute
- Add the broad beans and cook until warm (1 minute), reserve
- Drain the pasta and add immediately the extra-virgin olive oil (about 3 to 4 tbsp)
- Mix the beans and the pasta, add to the plates and finish it up with a few shaved pecorino pieces on top with a sprinkle of salt.