Parsley Fettucine with Broad Beans and Crème Fraîche

You need lots of broad beans, by weight, for each portion. By the time five pounds are out of their pods you will be lucky to have one pound of beans left. Young broad beans are essential for this dish. Large beans need far more cooking and will taste coarse.

Ingredients

  • 2 oz (50 g) flat leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Pasta

  • 4 oz (100 g) plain flour
  • 1 medium egg
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Beans and sauce

  • 5 lb (2.25 kg) broad beans in pod
  • 4 fl oz (120 ml) cr è me fraîche
  • 2 oz (50 g) Parmesan cheese, grated

Method

  1. Blend the parsley with the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of water in a liquidiser. Divide this purée into two.
  2. Combine the flour, egg, a good pinch of salt, and one-half of the parsley purée. Knead until smooth. Rest for 2 hours (the dough – not yourself).
  3. Shell the beans. Some people prefer to wear gloves for this, as the juices will leave a little dark stain, especially in large beans. Drop them into boiling water for 2 minutes and then drain. Remove the skins. You should be left with a bright green, tender vegetable.
  4. Roll out the pasta dough, on a machine if you have one, into thin ribbons about 1/3 in (8 mm) wide.

To Complete

  1. Boil the fettucine in salted water for 2 minutes and then drain, shaking off as much liquid as you can. Season with salt and pepper, then toss in the olive oil.
  2. Boil the cr è me fraîche, remaining parsley purée and grated Parmesan in a saucepan, then add the beans.
  3. Twirl a portion of fettucine with a large fork and place one on each hot plate. Spoon the sauce and beans around the pasta and serve immediately.
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