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An Egyptian staple dish, ful medames (or foul moudammas) is a stew made from fava (or dried broad beans), the Egyptian staple bean, from which they also prepare soup (actually a small distinction from this dish) and ta'amia. Traditionally this is cooked for hours and hours in the oven, much like baked beans, but you can also do it on the kitchen stove. In Egypt, this is also eaten as a breakfast dish, and I sometimes like it that way, too. In that case, black coffee wouldn't hurt.

Be warned: this is a vegetarian meal that is brown gack. Very much so.

There's no real measures, just see how much you like of the flavorings. I'll give some just as a guideline (which is the way I think you should always look at them, except for baked goods...).

The recipe

for 2-4, depending on how much bread you serve along.

1 cup dried broad beans, washed, soaked and rinsed 1 teaspoon of cumin seed 1 ... or more cloves of garlic, minced Chili powder or flakes or dried chillies at your own discretion 2 tablespoons red lentils Flat leaf parsley Lemon juice or lemon slices Olive oil Salt

Fry the cumin seeds in the olive oil. Add the garlic and take care it does not burn. Then add the broad beans, enough water to cover them, and the chili powder. Bring to a boil and let simmer until the beans are becoming tender. Add water as needed. Then add the red lentils and let them cook until they disintegrate and thicken the stew. The broad beans themselves may also start falling apart, this is okay. Stir in salt, lemon juice and garnish with parsley.

Serve with pita bread, tomato slices and hard boiled eggs dusted with turmeric, or with a tomato and cucumber salad.

The Middle Eastern market in my town also sells canned Palestinian Foul Moudammas with chick peas.

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