Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ful Medammis

This is a really lovely, simple dish that I feel works well when coupled with long hours of study. Traditionally a street and breakfast food in Egypt, it is simple to prepare (albeit time consuming if starting from dried beans), nourishing and flavourful. I discovered the fava beans in my pantry yesterday, as I'd completely forgotten I had purchased them a few weeks back so I could have easy study food that didn't involve pizza delivery. Here's my version of them, which is slightly a-typical in that I mix my pickles directly in it before serving. Well, that, and I forgot to boil some eggs. Hope you enjoy!

1/2 pound dried fava beans
lots of water
pinch of salt

salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoons dried)
2 tablespoons olive oil (bust out the good stuff for this)
2-3 tablespoons finely chopped pickles
2-3 tablespoons thinly sliced pickled cubanelle peppers
1 small clove of garlic, pressed (I mince it then press it with salt and a knife)

pita or bread, also sliced hard boiled eggs (optional)

Combine the first group of ingredients and boil, covered, at medium to medium-high heat for 2- 2 1/2 hours or until soft. I like it so my skins are firm but the flesh is tender and has a lot of give but with a small amount of firmness remaining. Drain the beans from the water (I save this and water my plants). Add the second group of ingredients and mix them into the beans. I smash some of the beans a little with my spoon, but not most of them, for textural variance. Let sit 15-20 minutes while you bake your pita (or warm it in the oven) or other bread (today was regular bread since I'd already made that and I didn't have time to make pita). Slather onto the bread, or just eat it with a fork. Serves 2.

It's also good with some olives on it, slow cooked onions/leeks/shallot, or a touch of cheese, or hot sauce, or whatever you like.

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