Foul Medames

In honor of National Day tonight, we made foul medames. It’s a dish of stewed fava beans that is ubiquitous here in the Middle East, though most often eaten for breakfast. There are as many recipes for it as there are households, but it’s a very simple, filling, nutritious dish. It’s especially simple given that you can buy cans of it at the grocery store, kinda like you would buy a can of chili at home, though true fans would always make it from scratch. Ain’t nothing wrong with a can, in my opinion.

We followed this recipe for the most part, but made some changes to make it more appetizing to our girls (we left the beans unmashed and did not top it with parsley or diced onion) and omitted smoked paprika and lemon simply because we didn’t have any on hand. Jeff did decide to top the foul – which is pronounced “fool,” by the way, not “foul” as in gone-bad – with a fried egg and chopped tomato:


It’s so good and cuminy! I first had it at an Afghani restaurant here and the beans were creamier, akin to refried beans. It was topped with heaps of tomato, onion and cilantro, kind of like a pico de gallo, and I ate it scooped up in pita bread, kind of like tortilla chips. So, yeah, this is Mexican-Arab comfort food.

The girls liked it alright. Adele renamed fava beans “Fozzie beans” and that made it more fun for her to eat, apparently. Hey, whatever works.


May loved the beans, but wouldn’t eat the tomatoes, because she thought they were carrots, even though she has no problem with carrots. Just one of those nights, you know?


If you can find the beans in the States, I would recommend making a bowl of foul medames! Maybe for breakfast, if you’re the savory breakfast type, or as breakfast-for-dinner, which is always fun.


2 thoughts on “Foul Medames

  1. Thanks so much for the link to my recipe. I love the addition of the fried egg on top and will definitely be trying that next time. Such a beautiful blog you have here. I’m looking forward to exploring more. I am a new follower 🙂

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