The Cascina Lungha have been a let down. There’s no other way to put it. Healthy plants. Plenty of flowers. Fewer pods. But they were long and fat with promise. Keen expectation. And then crushing disappointment. The long,fat pods were like phantom pregnancies. There were few beans inside, maybe just three or four in a pod that promised 6-8.
However, I’m not cropist. I’m not obsessed with quantity. It’s flavour that matters to me. Even here the Cascina Lunga came second after my current joint Number One broad beans, Stereo and Crimson Flowered. While both these beans have a distinctive quality, mushroomy with a meaty touch and a hint of bitterness, the Cascina Lunga offered what ? A shadow, a silhouette, an outline of a broad bean. pleasant enough, to be sure, but not enough to get me to sit up and beg.
So Stereo and Crimson Flowered it is for the time being. The pods are short, and may only contain two to three beans, but they don’t let you down. The beans never grow into those gross, mealy bucklers better known varieties such as Aquadulce, become as soon as you turn your back. Their flavour reigns supreme and they don’t suffer from phantom pregnancie.
Note: From left to right, the beans are Crimson Flowered; Lunga Cascina; Stereo