Fava Bean and Goat Cheese Dip with Radishes

After being so thrilled to find all of those beautiful fava beans at Canino's  Mexican Market here in Houston, I knew I was set to make this delicious looking dip in Martha Stewart's April issue.  We had a busy weekend with many activities beginning to wind down for the school year.  I knew there might be some fast food runs here and there so I wanted to make something healthy for at home.

My son's "Odyssey of the Mind" team qualified for the state competition. That would keep us quite busy for half of the weekend.  His team was challenged to build a contraption that would perform a "simple" task like hammering.  They had to come up with a skit and tie the contraption to a storyline that included a famous person from history.  They created a story line about a lost invention of Leonardo da Vinci. 

The ingredients that went into this dip were simple but so aromatic. It was a wonderful dish to pull together because it is so visually appealing.  The lemon zest and juice with the fresh snippets of tarragon made my nose buds tingle.

Fresh Fava Beans from the market

The soft goat cheese is a perfect partner for the mild fava beans and the sharp crispness of the radishes.
I just cannot believe I haven't eaten radishes until now.  They are so good...well...especially spread with this dip.

Fava beans are the prettiest color green.  They are fun to shell because the pod is so big that they really "snap" quite satisfactorily!

The team did a great job.  Often I had to chuckle at the variety of pieces and parts teams were carting up and down the hallways.  All items for costumes and apparatus must come from scrap parts so some of the uses of foil, candy wrappers, soda cans, and whatnot were pretty amusing.  The judges were wonderfully kind and supportive of the kids.  Many of them had funny hats that they wore during the competition to create a light-hearted mood.

As the school year draws to a close, events like this help mark the end of so many new experiences for us here in our new home of Texas.  This was a tough move for all of us but we are finding our place slowly but surely in this metropolis.  We enormously appreciate the diversity of cultures all coming together in this city.  We always feel like we've just tipped the edge of discoveries waiting for us here.

Fava Bean and Goat Cheese Dip with Radishes

Fava Bean and Goat Cheese Dip with Radishes Recipe:
(adapted from the April issue of Martha Stewart Living)


2 pounds fava beans, shelled
1/2 cup soft goat cheese (4 oz)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest,
plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon water, plus more if needed
1 bunch radishes, halved if large

Prepare an ice-water bath.  Bring a saucepan of salted water to boil.  Cook fava beans until tender, 1 to 2 minutes.  Drain, and transfer to ice-water bath.  Let cool.  Drain, and peel beans.

Pulse beans, goat cheese, oil, tarragon, lemon zest and juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a food processor until just combined but still chunky, about 6 or 7 times.

Stir in water.  Add an additional tablespoon water if mixture is too thick.  Transfer to a bowl.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  Sprinkle with pepper just before serving.  Serve with radishes. (Snippets Notes:  I found these imported thin crackers at Whole foods that had bits of figs and hazelnuts in them.  I know, it sounds odd but in addition to the radishes, they also added a nice crunch)


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