This stew should be made right before serving, but most of the work is in the prep (peeling favas, slicing leeks, etc.), and that can be done ahead. You’ll need to buy about 4 pounds unshelled favas (or, out of season, use frozen peeled favas) to yield 2 cups. This dish is perfect served family style in the center of the table, or as part of a buffet.
- 2 cups fava beans
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/4 pounds new red potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 3 medium leeks, white and light-green parts, halved lengthwise and sliced 1 inch thick
- 1/2 cup pitted oil-cured black olives
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
- One 28-ounce can whole San Marzano tomatoes, crushed by hand
- 1 teaspoon crushed celery seeds
- Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 pounds medium (4-to-6-inch) calamari, tubes cut into 1-inch rings, tentacles halved
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
Shell fresh favas from the pod. Bring a pot of water to boil, add the fava beans, and simmer for 4 minutes. Drain and refresh fava beans under cold running water, and remove the outer skin from the favas.
Add the oil to a large Dutch oven over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the potatoes. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are brown and crispy all over, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the leeks, olives, and garlic, and cook until the leeks begin to wilt, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, slosh out the can with 1 cup water, and add that to the pan. Bring to a simmer, and stir in the celery seeds, red pepper flakes, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set the lid ajar, and simmer 20 minutes to blend the flavors.
Stir in the favas, and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the calamari and parsley, and cook until calamari just turns opaque and begins to curl, about 2 to 5 minutes. Serve immediately