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15-minute Ful Medames: Spicy Fava Bean Stew

For Ful Medames in a hurry try our very quick recipe using Hodmedod's Baked British Beans.

15-minute Ful Medames

Fool, ful or even foul. However you spell it, Ful Medames - or fava bean stew - is a classic of world cuisine: hearty, simple, sustaining and delicious. It’s perfect at any time of day but really comes into its own first thing in the morning. As far as I’m concerned it’s the breakfast of kings – or perhaps more accurately, of pharaohs.

But there’s a hitch, something that stops me enjoying ful more often. The best traditional ful medames – whether it’s the simple lemon juice, cumin and oil recipe or a rich tomato, chilli and spiced version – has to be prepared and cooked slowly. Here at Hodmedod we’re all for slow food (and Slow Food), but the planning required (in this case an 8 hour bean soak followed by, ideally, 3 or 4 hours cooking) sometimes gets in the way of a more immediate need for breakfast.

Which is why, ful-loving friends and readers, the discovery I made this morning is so exciting – I’ve stumbled across the solution to the ful in a hurry problem and it’s a wonderful thing – quick, delicious and very, very easy.

Here’s my recipe for 15 minute ful medames:

Serves 2 (or 1 if very hungry)


  • 1 can Hodmedod’s Baked British Beans
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin (more if you prefer)
  • A pinch or two of cayenne pepper (again, more if you prefer)
  • 1 wedge of lemon per person and 1 for cooking
  • A small bunch of fresh parsley
  • Olive oil
  • 1 egg per person
  • A handful of cherry tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pitta or some other flat bread to serve


  1. Put the egg(s) on to hard boil. Finely chop half the parsley and coarsely chop the rest. Put the beans into a small saucepan and begin to heat, add the cumin, cayenne and finely chopped parsley. Pour in a dessert spoon of olive oil and stir well.
  2. Chop the cherry tomatoes into quarters. When the egg or eggs are hard boiled peel and slice up (if you like you could serve with a fried, poached or even scrambled eggs). Warm your bread. With the back of a fork mash some of the beans in the pan, add the juice of one of the lemon wedges and season to taste.
  3. Plate up and garnish with the egg, tomato and coarsely chopped parsley. Serve with the warm bread and lemon wedges.
  4. That’s it!

Nick Saltmarsh
Nick Saltmarsh


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