July 20, 2018
the english insisted on calling them horse-beans
This morning I harvested the fava in my parents’ garden.
Here in Northern Ontario, fava is ready between the middle and the end of July. (in calabria, it’s planted in the fall, where it overwinters and then is ready for harvesting in late spring) Earlier in the week, a local Calabrese farmer who grows fields of fava brought his crop to market and my parents and my uncle-and-aunt bought a bushel each. We shelled the beans and then my mother blanched them, put them in bags and froze them for later use.
My aunt and my parents still use the term – horse-beans – for the legume. I tried to explain that in the mouths of the English it was a pejorative and that it’s purpose was to insult and demean the immigrants by suggesting that their prized fava was nothing more than food fit for horses.
The left image is the fave on the plant; the middle image is the plants in a pile after I’ve pulled the fave off and then pulled the plants out; the right image is the harvested fave in a bushel.