Brunch Foul

Foul is a breakfast dish, served in a large communal bowl for the whole family to dip into and scoop from using warm bread. My Mama always made it for brunch at the weekends, and in fact she still does when we are all home together. I usually make it as a light weekend lunch.

Most countries in the Middle East have their own version of this dish; some are hot, some are cold, some are very spicy, some are a smooth paste, some are very garlicky, some are much plainer and some even have an egg cracked into them. I have tried them all many times.

This recipe I am about to give you is absolutely the best one I have ever had, and its the one I grew up with. It’s a warm and chunky dip with rich tomatoes, fresh coriander and sweet onions. You will want to make it again and again once you have had your first bite.

Fava beans are quite difficult to source in the UK. If you are unable to buy dried fava beans, then you can usually get canned ones in most Middle Eastern markets, as an alternative. If you find dried beans, the soak for 8 hours or overnight, then simmer in water for 50 minutes before starting the recipe.



1 ½ cups of fava beans
3 vine ripened tomatoes, chunky chopped
3 garlic cloves, finaly chopped
1 medium red chili, finely chopped
1 white onion, chunky chopped
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp ground cumin
1 ½ tsp ground coriander
Handful of fresh coriander
2 pinches Himalayan pink salt, ground
1 pinch black pepper, freshly milled
3 cups water


1. put the oil, onions, garlic and red chili in a pan over a medium heat for 5 minutes until translucent
2. add the tomatoes and stir for another 2 minutes
3. push the tomato and onion mix to one side of the pan and add the fava beans to the clear side of the pan and stir to heat through
4. once warm, move a few beans over with the tomatoes so they remain whole, and using a potato masher, mash the fava beans down to a rough paste
5. add the water, salt, pepper, ground cumin, ground coriander and mix the entire contents of the pan together and heat for 5 minutes, or longer until the mix is no longer wet/ watery (you want quite a thick consistency)
6. add the fresh coriander leaves and stir in
7. once the dip is a thicker consistency, so that the pan looks try as you take a wooden spoon through the mixture, remove to a serving bowl, garnish with remaining fresh coriander leaves and serve.

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