Russian Black Fava Beans
(Vicia faba); a Slow Food Ark of Taste variety; Dual use: fresh (~65 days) or dry (~90 days)
With roots in gardens of Kievan Rus', the federation known as Old East Slavic that existed from the late 9th to the mid-13th century, Russian Black Fava beans were once highly favored in the Leningrad Oblast. They have had a place in Russian culture for so long they inspire a proverb: Boby ne griby: ne poseyav ne vzoydut' / Бобы не грибы: не посеяв не взойдут / Beans are not mushrooms: they will not sprout without sowing.
A truly hardy and productive variety, Russian Black Fava beans with a robust disease resistance and an ability to tolerate severe frosts appear in gardens as far north as the Arctic Circle.
Russian Black Fava beans are quite versatile, traditionally fried, boiled, or stewed.