Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen
Total Time
1 Hour
Yield
Serves 4 to 6 (makes 7 cups)

To keep the color in this mild spring soup bright, use a deep green head of lettuce, cooking it only enough to wilt it, and peel favas shortly before using them.

How to Make It

Step 1

Cut ribs from lettuce and finely chop ribs and leaves separately. Set leaves aside.

Step 2

In a large pot, cook lettuce ribs, leeks, celery, chopped dill, lemon zest, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper with butter over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until very tender, about 15 minutes.

Step 3

Stir in broth, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Add lettuce leaves, reduce heat, and simmer just until lettuce is tender, 1 minute. Set aside 1 cup of mixture.

Step 4

Whirl soup in batches in a blender until very smooth, pouring into a bowl as blended. Return soup to pot and stir in reserved unblended soup and 1 1/2 cups fava beans. Heat, stirring, over medium heat until steaming.

Step 5

Ladle soup into bowls. Dollop a generous spoonful of crème fraîche into each. Garnish with remaining fava beans and dill leaves and sprinkle with pepper. Add more salt and crème fraîche if you like.

Step 6

How to Double-Shell Favas: Makes 2 cups 30 minutes Tear open 3 lbs. fava pods*. Add beans from pods to a pot of boiling salted water and return to a boil. Cook just until beans are tender beneath skin (slit to check), 2 minutes. Drain; rinse with cold water. Peel leathery skin by tearing beans open at rounded ends and popping out beans. *Find at well-stocked grocery stores and farmers' markets. Make ahead: All but the final peeling, up to 1 day, chilled.

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