Pumpkin and Fava Bean Bake
This can easily be made vegan, all you have to do is use olive oil instead of butter and serve once blended, skipping the cheese, additional butter and oven time. Goes well with roast chicken, lamb and pork, or charred vegetables, citrusy vegetables.
1. Put the fava beans in a pot and cover with double the volume of cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer until the beans are soft but not mushy, about 30 minutes. Drain.
2. Meanwhile, melt a quarter of the butter in a heavy-bottomed pan and gently fry the onion, carrot, and leek until soft and aromatic, about 7 minutes.
3. Add the squash, garlic, bay leaf and thyme and cook for a few minutes, then add in the stock and season to taste. Make a cartouche by cutting out a piece of baking parchment into roughly the size and shape of the pan, then lay over the vegetables. This allows the vegetables to cook evenly and also enables some steam to escape without boiling away all the juices too rapidly. Place on a gentle heat and leave for 30 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the squash is soft. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius.
4. Remove the bay leaf and blend the squash mixture with the fava beans. Whisk the eggs and beat them into the puree, along with the gruyere and remaining butter. Put in the oven and leave for 30 minutes, until the top is bouncy and slightly browned in areas.
5. Meanwhile fry the sage leaves. Heat the oil in a frying pan to medium-high. Drop in about 10 leaves at a time, and leave for 30 seconds, then take out with a slotted spoon, drop onto some kitchen towel, and sprinkle over some salt. Use these as an elaborate and delicious garnish to your finished dish.