During these strange and uncertain times, we’re all in need of a pick-me-up. And what better than something to feed the body as well as the soul? In our current cookery series, James Gingell from The Stinky Chef deli in Rawtenstall, Lancashire shares a selection of delicious recipes.

Gingell says: “Fava, or broad beans, are common throughout the Mediterranean and date back to 6000 BC where they were known to be a snack favoured by the ancient Greeks and Romans. In this simple recipe, the young peeled beans are paired with Pecorino Romano, a hard, salty cheese made from sheep’s milk. However, the recipe will work just as well with other hard cheeses like Parmesan or Manchego.” 

Fava e pecorino (broad beans and pecorino cheese)


Serves 4

800g Broad beans (peeled)

120g Pecorino cheese

½ lemon (squeezed)

60 ml extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper


Ideally, it’s best to use new season broad beans removed from the pod and blanched in salted boiling water for five minutes before removing and placing in ice-cold water. Alternatively, you can you use defrosted frozen broad beans, but it’s not quite the same. 

Remove the outer skin from each bean and discard, placing the beans into a small mixing bowl.

Next, cut the pecorino into 1cm-long matchsticks and then carefully add to the beans. 

Now, add a good quality olive oil, 1/2 a squeezed lemon and salt and pepper to the beans and cheese. Dress gently to combine the flavours.

Arrange neatly on small plates and serve with toasted Italian bread. A great component to any antipasti spread or as a simple starter or side accompaniment. 

Buon appetito.