BRAD     |     EMILLIE

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Uliana will not eat Green Eggs and Ham

The last week of summer left me with little time to relax.  There was school supplies to be gotten (Nikolai didn't even own a pair of shoes(!) let alone a lunch box or any thing else that he'll need next week).  There was more pickles to be made and apples to harvest.  We are also in a flurry of activity around something that is... perhaps... best left for another blog. (This is my attempt at building excitement through the use of anticipation.)

But Uliana actually provided for most of this week's drama.  The problem was related to a hard boiled egg.  Like most dutiful parents, we followed typical advice around introducing eggs yolks as a good source of iron, protein and fats.  General wisdom suggests that egg whites are allergenic and may require a later introduction.

So we followed all advice and gave Uliana a few spoonfuls of hard boiled yolk mixed with water.  She responded by vomiting three times, which was followed by 48 hours of diarrhea, and an associated diaper rash that was so bad that her skin started to peel.  I thought I'd seen everything as a parent... but nothing prepared me for that.

We saw a nurse, a doctor, a naturopathic doctor and a dietician.  They all had the same comment: no fever and she was in a great mood (even tending towards hyperactive)... so it was definitely food related.  And for some reason they all suggested that we try introducing yolks again in one month... but I'm too traumatized to even consider the possibility.

Above is a picture of Uliana on her way to another doctors appointment.

And below is a picture of Nikolai's creation... is it a tent or a cage?  It's all up to your interpretation!
The recipes today are eggless and feature Broad Beans (Fava Beans).
This year we grew broad beans as a "green manure" cover crop, but in the spring we didn't have the heart to plow them under.  Instead we waited until they were setting fresh young pods, then we spent one month eating them.  And despite all of the bad press about how bitter and tough fava beans can be, ours were soft and buttery when eaten young and fresh.

Perhaps they don't go to market well (we picked and ate within 24 hours), and certainly older broad beans require skinning.  However, when eaten young they don't require skinning at all!

Broad beans "Edamame" style
Simply grill or steam the whole pod of young beans until they are tender.  Toss in coarse sea salt, and eat like edamame by shelling the bean with your teeth.

Scafata di Fave
This is an Italian stew that tastes great served with fresh bread.

1. You will need about 2 kg (4 lbs) of fresh young broad beans still in their pod. Shuck them as you only want to use the bean for this dish.

2. Saute 1 diced onion in olive oil until soft. Add 4 cloves of diced garlic, fava beans, 1/4 cup of chopped parsley and 2 (14 oz) cans of chopped tomatoes.

3. Season with red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer for about 30 minutes, or until fava beans are tender.

4. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and more parsley.

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