This fava bean toast is slathered with lemony ricotta and sprinkled with shards of crispy, salty prosciutto for a simple spring appetizer.
Fresh fava beans are the prima donna of spring vegetables. They require double shelling and blanching, and by the time all is said and done you’ve reduced your yield from 1 lbs of pods to hopefully 1/2 cup of edible beans. It’s a small harvest for something so involved, but as we all know, they’re worth it. The beans are tender and delicately flavored with a buttery, sometimes nutty profile. Given how much time they demand, I prefer to serve them in a way that highlights the flavor and texture of this labor of love. This fava bean toast delivers just that. It’s light, simple and fresh.
I tossed the favas with a few glugs of olive oil, salt, pepper, a sliced green onion and a touch of lemon juice. Then I piled this fava mixture onto a bed of lemony ricotta slathered over thick slices of ciabatta. I crisped up prosciutto and spread the crumbles over the toasts for a salty crunch, which can easily be skipped if you’re a vegetarian or don’t have prosciutto on hand.
And if you’re wondering about a wine pairing with this spring aperitif, you’ve come to the right place!
We enjoyed a light, fresh Grüner Veltliner from Austria. The wine is racy, peppery, and citrusy with mouthwatering acidity and a subtle herbaceous quality– perfect for a spring afternoon with fresh favas.
fava bean ricotta toasts with crispy prosciutto
Delicate, tender fava beans and lemony ricotta are slathered on ciabatta toasts and sprinkled with shards of crispy, salty prosciutto. This simple recipe highlights fresh fava beans and the bright flavors of spring.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Yield: 12 1x
- Category: Appetizer
- Cuisine: American
- 1 loaf ciabatta (for twelve 1″ slices)
- olive oil for drizzling bread, plus 2 tbsp
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 5 pieces of prosciutto
- 2 lbs fresh fava beans (to yield 1 cup of shelled beans)
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 cup + 2 tbsp ricotta
- zest of 1 lemon
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Slice the ciabatta into twelve 1″ thick slices and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Bake 5- 8 minutes, or until edges are crisp and golden but the center of the bread still has some softness and give. Transfer to cooling rack and set aside.
- Place slices of prosciutto on same baking sheet and return to oven for about 10 minutes, or until crisp. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Break the prosciutto into pieces and set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and fill a medium sized bowl with ice water for blanching. Break open the fava bean pods. Slide your finger along one side, opening the seam as you would a zipper. If a pod doesn’t open easily, use a paring knife and slit the bean pod entirely open, exposing the spongy insides and the beans. Remove the beans and discard the pods.
- Salt the boiling water and blanch the fava beans for 30 seconds. With a slotted spoon, remove the beans from the hot water and immediately plunge into a bowl filled with iced water to stop the cooking. With your fingers or a paring knife, remove the top of the shell and squeeze the other end of the shell to pop out the fava bean. Discard the outer skin. Toss the fava beans with lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Add one tbsp olive oil, mix, taste and add more olive oil if desired. Set aside.
- Combine ricotta and lemon zest and season with salt and pepper. Slather the ciabatta toasts with about 1 1/2 tbsp ricotta mixture each. Divide fava bean mixture evenly across the ricotta toasts and garnish with prosciutto crumbles. Serve immediately.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 163
- Sugar: 2.4g
- Sodium: 638mg
- Fat: 4.8g
- Saturated Fat: 1g
- Unsaturated Fat: 3.4g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 22g
- Fiber: 1.8g
- Protein: 8g
- Cholesterol: 9.1mg
Keywords: fava bean toast