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Favas: the bean for cool weather

publication date: Oct 1, 2011
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Fava beans (known as broad beans in the UK), are easy to grow and have an unusual earthy, nutty flavor. Botanically, Fava Beansthey are a kind of vetch. Like all legumes, they can fix nitrogen in nodules on their roots, leaving a fertilizer boost in the soil for the next crop. Their flowers are surprisingly fragrant and are very attractive to pollinators and other beneficial insects. They are usually eaten fresh and shelled, but they can also be dried, then cooked. In the UK, there has been some research into making foods like hummus, falafel, or tempeh from locally grown fava beans, to reduce dependence on imported garbanzos or soybeans. There are also small-seeded varieties which are mostly grown for cover crops or livestock feed.

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