Habas con Jamon – Broad Beans with Cured Ham

23 Apr

Now, if there was a prize for the least photogenic dish in the world, this one would be up there with the final contenders. It´s a very simple and tasty dish, especially made with the young tender broad beans which are in season right now. Our vegetable patch is delivering nicely and I make these regularly.

And then I take a photo. But to no avail. Broad beans braised slowly for about 30 minutes just don´t look pretty. You have the photos to prove it here. Sigh. If only they were as photogenic as Roger´s beautiful beetroot. But what they lack in looks, they make up for in taste, you´ll just have to believe me on this.

It´s quite a versatile dish – it is served here as a tapas, a side dish or with fried or poached eggs as a light supper dish. It can also be mixed into beaten eggs and made into a tortilla or huevos revueltos (scrambled eggs).


  • 500g of young broad beans (podded, but keep the skins and slice them into 1cm pieces)
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • About 6 cloves of garlic peeled and sliced lengthways in half
  • 100g of finely chopped jamon (or use lardons or pancetta)
  • Olive oil
  • Seasoning
  • Sweet pimentón (optional)

The Spanish way of making this dish is to braise the onion, garlic and beans (pods and skins) in olive oil until tender. It does taste wonderful but this is how I do it.

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and  add the bean pods and skins and cook for about 4-5 minutes until just starting to become tender. Drain. Put about 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil into a deep frying pan that has a lid (or that you can cover with foil) and gently poach the onions and garlic (with the lid on) until they are soft.

Another dish..another day...and no, still not pretty!

Now add the beans and continue to cook gently, stirring to mix the beans into the oil every so often, with the pan covered. They will simmer and braise until very tender. Near the end of the cooking time add the jamon which will also cook through. I also like to add a sprinkle of pimentón when I add the jamon, but this is not typical. Taste and season if necessary and serve hot or cold.

For a similar dish using runner beans, take a look at this recipe.

Big Man and I are heading to the UK tomorrow. We have packed our umbrella as I think we have a few rainy days awaiting us. I won´t have access to e-mail but I look forward to catching up with you all next week – hope it´s a good one for everyone!


67 Responses to “Habas con Jamon – Broad Beans with Cured Ham”

  1. Mad Dog April 23, 2012 at 12:23 #

    I love broad beans and noticed them on sale in the Boqueria on Friday. Your recipe is an excellent way of cooking them! Have a good trip 😉

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 12:27 #

      Yes, it´s definitely broad bean time here although you can buy them frozen (just the pods) all year quite cheaply. Hope your trip is going/gone well! Just need to finish chucking a few things in the case and we´re good to go….!

      • Mad Dog April 23, 2012 at 13:01 #

        Yes it’s all going well here, albeit hectic.

  2. themateriallady April 23, 2012 at 12:38 #

    I wasn’t a fan of broad beans until I had them with chorizo in a risotto. Since I am a new convert I will try this recipe sometime soon.

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:18 #

      Neither was I – I think my experience had been grey, tough beans from tins and now that we have ours lovely beans growing, I adore them!

  3. thecompletecookbook April 23, 2012 at 12:59 #

    I love simple dishes like this – they warm your soul with comfort and deliciousness too.
    How exciting to be making a trip home with Big Man. Enjoy and looking forward to catching up with you when you are back.
    🙂 Mandy xo

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:18 #

      Thanks Mandy – we´re looking forward to the trip!

  4. gardenfreshtomatoes April 23, 2012 at 13:10 #

    You say ham and beans, I’m there! Love the sound of this…
    Have a wonderful visit home. We’ll miss you!

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:18 #

      Ham and beans it is indeed! Looking forward to the trip but I know I am always glad to get back here again 🙂

  5. Michi April 23, 2012 at 13:50 #

    Me encantan las habas!! And with jamón? Yum! Fried spinach with garlic, and habas con jamón, have to be two of my favorite ways to eat veggies here in Spain. 😉

  6. TheDorsetFinca April 23, 2012 at 14:22 #

    I saw the photo straight away and thought – yum! It definitely is photogenic! I just have to wait for our beans to get growing! x

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:18 #

      Ah thanks – I struggled with the photos but it tastes so good!

  7. Food,Photography & France April 23, 2012 at 15:01 #

    I know this dish and it is as delicious as it is difficult to photograph:)

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:21 #

      It is a horribly tricky one to make look appetising! Glad you can vouch for its tastiness 😉

  8. robingraham April 23, 2012 at 15:09 #

    A favourite in our house, though we have to buy our beans 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:22 #

      So do we out of season 😦 Still tastes great though!

  9. zestybeandog April 23, 2012 at 15:17 #

    Looks wonderful! I can’t say I’ve had broad beans before… I’ll have to try them.

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:23 #

      Ooh, they´re very good – even tinned or frozen if they are baby pods are lovely.

  10. Piglet in Portugal April 23, 2012 at 15:21 #

    I love the sound of this dish. In the UK I never experimented by trying different dishes.
    using veg that’s one of the best things I like about living aborad and of course blogging. It takes you out of your comfort zone. I can’t remember when did you plant your broad beans? Is it just one crop a year or can you plant them throughout the summer?

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:24 #

      We planted at Christmas but you can plant pretty much all year. One of my neighbours plants a handful every month but we just do one planting, sometimes two (another at the end of summer). And yes, blogging opens you up to all sorts of exciting new ways of doing things!

  11. Just A Smidgen April 23, 2012 at 15:37 #

    I’m fairly certain I’ve seen broad beans at our market here! Will have to look for them next weekend when they open:) Have a wonderful journey/escape.. even in the rain it will be a glorious holiday I imagine!!

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:28 #

      We´re over in the UK on a bit of a business trip but we will get time to do a little socialising, so not all work, which is good! If you do see broad beans, do buy a kilo and think of us!

  12. ChgoJohn April 23, 2012 at 15:43 #

    I think the mix of broad beans with the jambon must be delicious and I love the idea of topping a serving with a poached egg. Have a safe trip, Tanya, and wonderful visit. 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 16:29 #

      The poached egg is my favourite with this, softly done of course! Thanks for the good wishes, I am raring to go now 🙂

  13. sportsglutton April 23, 2012 at 18:28 #

    Beans and pancetta? Any day of the week I’d enjoy these combination. 😉

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 19:45 #

      They do work well together – and actually are good with an ice cold beer!

      • sportsglutton April 23, 2012 at 20:57 #

        How did I leave that part out of my comment!!! 😉

  14. PendleStitches April 23, 2012 at 19:39 #

    I know envy is a terrible thing, but I do envy you your vegetable garden! Have a wonderful trip to the UK. It’s sunny today but the end of the week is looking less promising. But then, they don’t always get it right…so fingers crossed.

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 19:50 #

      Veggie envy is fine – people don´t commit murder over broad beans 😉 Mind you… maybe they do in something like Midsomer Murders! We have been experiencing 4 seasons in one day here this week so are prepared for any weather!

      • PendleStitches April 23, 2012 at 20:43 #

        My friend lives in Edinburgh and says the same about the weather there. You’d never buy a house in Midsomer, although I suspect there are plenty of empty properties and low prices! 😉

      • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 20:48 #

        Now that Tom Barnaby has gone I feel less motivated to buy in Midsomer anyway 😉

  15. foodblogandthedog April 23, 2012 at 21:25 #

    I saw a farmer at the bins today as I was recycling my wine bottles. He had afew crates of broad beans and lollo rosso in his van to take to the market. I made a mental note to look at broad bean recipes when I got in. Completely forgot until now, thanks for the reminder, and I never knew that you could eat the skins too. Enjoy your trip!

    • Chica Andaluza April 23, 2012 at 21:37 #

      Funny – I did my recycling today too! I know you don´t eat meat, but braised like this with plenty of garlic, pimentón and even a couple of spoons of crushed tomatoes is wonderful. And don´t throw the skins away (unless the beans are really big inside in which case the skins will be tough) they´re gorgeous 🙂

  16. Bluejellybeans April 24, 2012 at 00:24 #

    ¡Qué rico Tanya! Es que me comería entero esa fuente ahora mismo, qué hambre!! 😉

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:36 #

      Nos gusta mucho este plato – y más con las habas de nuestro huerto!

  17. Tandy April 24, 2012 at 08:25 #

    We are off to Scotland tomorrow! Travel safely 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:36 #

      Likewise – look forward to hearing about your travels!

  18. promenadeplantings April 24, 2012 at 10:14 #

    I’m so pleased you posted a borad bean recipe, my broad beans ove rthe last year or two have frankly been crap, but this year WILL be different!! I hope you packed a souwester as well as the umbrella 😉

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:37 #

      Luckily we did prepare for the rain as there was rather a lot! Will look out for some more broad bean recipes to post as we eat a lot here…

  19. Purely.. Kay April 24, 2012 at 21:06 #

    The ham in this dish, to me, just puts this over the top. I bet the flavor in this is out of this world. Loved this

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:39 #

      The ham is good but it still tastes lovely with bacon or even mushrooms..it´s very typical here.

  20. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide April 25, 2012 at 00:47 #

    Ha, reminds me of how they cook beans down here. I love this recipe.

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:40 #

      Interesting – but maybe you mean that they stew their vegetables! They are good though, and this comes from a woman who normally likes here veg crunchy 🙂

  21. dotdos April 25, 2012 at 01:07 #


  22. rsmacaalay April 25, 2012 at 07:52 #

    As long as its tasty and simple I dont mind how it looks. Sometimes even the most boring looking food are the ones that taste real good, it happens a lot in cases of Asian dishes

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:42 #

      It´s true – something may not be very photogenic but it tastes wonderful!

  23. Charles April 25, 2012 at 23:03 #

    It’s funny, I used to detest broad beans with every fibre of my being when I was a kid. Now it’s a real treat when I can find them in the stores and get them in. I bet this must be tasty, and it looks plenty pretty to me to be honest!

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:57 #

      Me too – but I think I I probably remembered tinned beans!

  24. island traveler April 26, 2012 at 13:49 #

    A delicious meal to start the day! My son has been craving for ham lately and now I can make it even more exciting by following this recipe. As for beans, I’ve yet to convince him that it’s good…and healthy. Thanks…

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 10:58 #

      I know that some children are harder to persuade with vegetables!

  25. cookinginsens April 26, 2012 at 16:59 #

    The photo looks great! Appetizing!

  26. Karen April 29, 2012 at 00:19 #

    I think your photo is very good. I love broad beans…they are sometimes called Italian green beans here. I hope the weather turns nicer for you. Even if it is work, I know you will enjoy your trip.

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 11:02 #

      Had never heard of them as Italian green beans – how interesting! We´re back, slightly damp but worn out and happy from good week!

  27. peasepudding April 29, 2012 at 06:36 #

    Roger is talented in making food look beautiful but I can I agne how delicious these broad beans taste.

  28. ceciliag April 29, 2012 at 16:51 #

    Luckily I bet this was much tastier than it looks! And some things are just impossible to make pretty. Hope you enjoyed your visit to the UK!

    • Chica Andaluza April 29, 2012 at 17:20 #

      It was good Celi, just not very pretty! We´re back from a good but speedy trip. It´s lovely to be home, and I think you head back tomorrow too.

  29. bitsandbreadcrumbs April 29, 2012 at 18:23 #

    I love this preparation for broad beans and bet it would be terrific with other green beans, too. Broad beans aren’t quite in season here yet, but I’ll be on the lookout so I can try this out!

  30. Sawsan@ Chef in disguise April 30, 2012 at 06:38 #

    Have a safe trip my friend and enjoy your time 🙂
    I love simple dishes like this one, they really allow the fresh ingredients to shine

    • Chica Andaluza April 30, 2012 at 06:57 #

      Thanks Sawsan – it was a quick one, we´re back up our mountain…tired but happy!


  1. Broad Bean and Potato Soup « Chica Andaluza - May 19, 2012

    […] waste much when it comes to food. All the unsual bits get used from the meat we eat, and even our broad beans shells, when they´re young and tender, get used in tortillas, scrambled eggs and cooked with […]

  2. Lamb with Quince, Pomegranate and Coriander « Chica Andaluza - January 9, 2013

    […] started with Jamon y Queso (Ham & Cheese) and Habas con Jamon (Broad Beans with Ham) and a delicious Brandada. Check out Mad Dog´s fantastic post all about […]

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