Happy Donabe Life

Steamed Fava Bean Salad with Sansho

Fava beans are among my favorite spring ingredients, and I get so excited when I see them at a local farmers market. When they are in season, they are so flavorful that I like to prepare them in simple ways. Here is one of my quick and frequently-made fava bean recipes. I steam the shelled fava beans for a few minutes, peel them and toss them with extra virgin olive oil, grated Parmigiano Reggiano, and top with some Salt-Pickled Sansho Berries. The dish is amazing. If you don’t have sansho berries, you can simply finish with sansho powder (and adjust the seasoning by adding a little amount of sea salt).

Vegetarian option

This is a vegetarian dish


Mushi Nabe


2 - 3 as an appetizer


  • About 8 oz (240 g) shelled fresh fava beans
  • 1 tablespoon or more extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon or more freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 to 1 tablespoon Salt-pickled Sansho Berries



  1. Get Mushi Nabe ready according to the basic steaming instructions.
  2. Spread the fava beans on the steam grate. Steam for 3 – 5 minutes (the steaming time vary depending on the size of the beans).
  3. Transfer the fava beans to a tray and let them cool down enough so they are not too hot to handle.
  4. Peel the fava beans and transfer to a bowl. Drizzle the olive oil and toss. Add the Parmesan cheese and toss again.
  5. Transfer to a serving bowl/ plate and top with the sansho berries.

When the fava beans are steamed, instead of boiled, the sweetness is more pronounced and the texture is really nice, too.


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