I love to eat in the spring. The abundance is almost overwhelming. Every trip to the market brings more and more possibilities. This week I found packaged pea greens, and that led me to this delicious light supper. Socca, a thin chickpea crepe which is a favorite street food in the south of France, is a common snack in our home. Today I made a little bit thicker of a crepe which was the vehicle for more delicious fava beans (they aren’t in season long; I have to make the most of them!) and some english peas. I finished these crepes off with a drizzle of creme fraiche and lemon. We all loved it, so much so that I am thinking of new combos daily.
Chickpea Crepe with Fava Beans and English Peas
1 cup chickpea flour
1 cup plus two tablespoons water
3/4 teaspoon salt, plus more for serving
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 pounds fava beans, shelled and blanched, then peeled
1 pound english peas, shelled
teaspoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic, mined
3 scallions, sliced
1 bunch pea greens
1/4 cup creme fraiche
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper
I used the socca recipe from David Lebovitz book A Sweet Life in Paris for this crepe. I basically followed his directions, but made the batter a touch thicker than when I make socca. (which is a VERY frequent occurrence here) Mix the chickpea flour, 1 cup water, one tablespoon of olive oil, cumin and salt in a bowl with a whisk. Let the batter sit for two hours. When you are ready to use it check the consistency. You want it to resemble pancake batter. Add more water if you need.
Remove the fava beans from their pods, and the english peas from their pods as well. If you have children, I highly recommend enlisting their help. Both for the free labor, and because it has been my experience that the more involved they are in the preparation of food the more likely they are to eat it. My 5 year old had so much fun shelling the favas that he has decided that fava beans are his favorite vegetable. This is my picky eater- so I’m telling you I am on to something here.
Blanch the fava beans in boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove to a strainer and run very cold water over them until you can touch them. Remove the beans from their skins and set aside.
In a saucepan, heat the oil and saute the garlic and scallion until the scallion wilts. About two minutes. Add the peas and cook for 3 minutes. The peas were not blanched so they need a little longer cooking time than the favas. Add the favas and a big pinch of salt, saute for 2 minutes more. Set aside.
Heat the griddle and brush with the remaining olive oil. Pour about a standard soup ladle of batter on the griddle, and flip when you see bubbles appear on top. Same as pancakes.
In a small bowl whisk together the creme fraiche and lemon juice. Add salt and pepper to taste. This is incredibly forgiving. If you want more lemon flavor add more juice, a creamier consistency add more creme fraiche.
I wanted a little something fresh and crunchy to go on my crepe, and this time of year you can actually buy pea greens. If you have a garden you can also just pick them. I did not realize they were edible until recently and I really love the fresh and crisp flavor. Sort of reminiscent of eating the raw peas. You can use any kind of green you want in place. Arugula would be a great substitute.