This simple pasta with fava beans is made special with Ragusano, an unpasteurized cow’s milk cheese from Sicily.
Ragusano may be substituted with Caciocaballo, Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano
- kosher salt, as needed
- 5 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- ½ cup onion, roughly chopped
- 1 stalk celery, finely chopped, plus 2 t celery leaves
- 1 cup vegetable broth, approximately
- freshly cracked black pepper, as needed
- 1 pound spaghetti
- 2 tablespoon flat leaf parsley, minced
- ½ pound ragusano cheese, grated
- 4 cup fava beans, shelled
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the shelled fava beans and blanch for one minute. Transfer with slotted spoon to a prepared ice bath to stop cooking. Reserve the salted water for the pasta.
Drain beans, gently peel and discard outer skins. Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add two tablespoons olive oil, the onion. chopped celery and a pinch of salt. Cook until softened, about five minutes. Add three-quarters cup vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to simmer and add half of the peeled fava beans and about two tablespoons minced celery leaves. Cook one minute, remove from heat and transfer the mixture to a food processor or blender, Pulsing until a rough puree is achieved. Transfer the puree to a small saucepan, stir in remaining vegetable broth a litlle at a time to achieve a nice consistency. Add the reserved fava beans. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Return the reserved pot of salted water to a boil; add pasta and cook according to package directions until al dente. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat remaining olive oil over medium heat until just warm. Stir in the minced parsley.
Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet with oil and parsley; heat over medium high heat tossing to coat, about two minutes. Remove from heat, add half of the cheese and toss to combine.
Divide the fava bean puree among serving plates. Top with pasta and remaining cheese. Drizzle with olive oil. Serve immediately.