Raw Fava and Mint on Manchego Cheese with Salami Slices takes advantage of these uniquely flavorful beans by pairing them with two of their most natural partners: mint and sheep’s milk cheese.
For perfect triangles of manchego ask someone at the cheese counter to slice an approximately 5‑ounce wedge into 6 (¼‑inch) slices. Once you get them home, cut them straight down the middle into 12 triangles.
- 1 pound whole young fava beans (in their pods)
- 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1–2 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves (to taste)
- freshly cracked black pepper (to taste)
- 12 very thin slices of Tuscan salami (about 2 ounces)
- 12 (¼‑inch thick) slices manchego cheese (about 5 ounces, cut into “tortilla chip” sized triangles (see notes)
- whole blanched almonds (optional)
Prepare the fava topping: Remove the fava beans from their pods. Next, peel away the tough outer skin encasing each bean. This can be a tedious chore but if you knick the casing with your fingernail the rest should easily peel away. Try a couple of different methods and have fun with it. For this recipe resist the temptation to blanch the fava beans before peeling. Sure the peeling will be easier but the taste and texture will be affected. Which for some recipes is just fine, but not this one. Once peeled split the favas in half along their natural separation point. You should have about 3/4 of a cup shelled, peeled, and separated fava beans. Place them in a small bowl and toss them with olive oil, chopped mint, and several big grinds of black pepper.
Assemble the dish: Lay the salami comfortably distanced on a large serving plate. Center a manchego slice in the center of each slice of salami, then top the cheese with a tablespoon or so of the fava mixture. Serve immediately with almonds on the side (if using). I encourage you to pick these up by the salami and eat them “taco-style”.