Orecchiette with Favas and Tomatoes
Orecchiette con Fave e Pomodorini

*required fields

thank you!
Thank you for e-mailing a recipe to your friend.
home or Register

recipes  /  Orecchiette with Favas and Tomatoes this recipe: Print
Orecchiette with Favas and Tomatoes
Orecchiette con Fave e Pomodorini
cookbook: Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy
region: Calabria
main ingredients: tomato
user comments (1)

serves: serves 6

A technique I have always liked, when preparing vegetables for a pasta dish, is to toss them in the pot with the pasta as it boils. Depending on which takes longer, I put the vegetable in first and then add the pasta, or vice versa. Either way, I believe this maximizes the flavor and nutritional value of the vegetables, and I know the pasta absorbs some of the vegetable flavor as they cook in the same water. I was glad to see this technique used frequently in preparing pasta dishes in Calabria, like this one, where orecchiette and arugula are cooked in the pot together before they are tossed with the other dressing vegetables, favas, and cherry tomatoes. Great to make when fresh favas are in the market.


3 pounds fresh fava-bean pods, shelled
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 pound orecchiette
1 pound arugula leaves, washed and trimmed
½ cup Grana Padano, grated, plus more for passing


A heavy-bottomed 12-inch skillet;


In the medium saucepan, bring about 4 quarts of salted water to boil, drop in the shelled favas, and blanch about 2 minutes, until they turn bright green. Drain the beans, and drop them right away into a large bowl of ice water. When chilled, drain the favas again; peel off the inner skins and discard. You should have about 2 cups peeled favas.

Pour 1/4 cup of the olive oil into the skillet, and set it over medium heat. Scatter the favas and sliced onion in the pan, stir, and cook until the onion is translucent, about 3 to 4 minutes. Drop the cherry tomatoes into the skillet, and season with the salt. Cook until the cherry tomatoes release their juices and begin to break down, about 5 minutes; keep the sauce warm, but not cooking, until the pasta is dressed.

Meanwhile, fill the pasta pot with salted water, and heat to a rolling boil. Drop in the orecchiette, stir, and return to the boil. Cook the pasta until it's approximately 5 minutes from being done (according to the cooking time on the package), then stir the arugula into the pot.

Cook the pasta and arugula together for another 4 minutes or so, until the orecchiette is al dente, then lift both from the pot with a large strainer (or empty the pot into a colander if you prefer), and drop the pasta and arugula into the skillet of sauce. Toss everything together for a minute or two, over low heat, then turn off the heat, drizzle on the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and toss well. Sprinkle the grated cheese on top, and toss again. Heap the pasta in warm bowls, and serve immediately, with more cheese at the table.

Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy w/FREE 30-min. DVD

Lidia's Lastest Cookbook! "Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy" features 175 regional recipes from 12 regions of Italy, PLUS, for limited time only, get a FREE 3-minute DVD along with the book. Get your autographed copy today!

Add To Cart

Food Books and Dvds Tableware

Lidia's Commonsense Italian Cooking
Lidia brings viewers on a road trip into the heart of Italian-American cooking.
buy now ›
read more ›

Enjoy Lidia's pastas and sauces!
buy now ›

Lidia's Stoneware Collection

buy now ›

Sign up now for access to
recipes, tips, and more!

Becoming a member of the Community Table is easy and free!
Please fill out the required fields below.
*required fields

sign in information
about you

Welcome to the Community Table. Please sign in to
access your recipe box, photos, discussions,
and personal settings.

Forgot password?
Not a member? Join now!