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Moroccan Bessara: a Fava Bean Soup or Dip

Moroccan Bessara: a Fava Bean Soup or Dip

by Josiah Meldrum September 09, 2015 1 Comment

In Morocco Split Dried Fava Beans are used as the main ingredient of bessara, a spiced dish that can be served as a dip much like hummus or as a soup.

Bessara - or bisara - is a classic Moroccan dish which can be served as a dip or soup. Our recipe is based on one from Moroccan chef Alia (her website has an excellent video demonstration).

Serves: 8

Ingredients

  • 400g Hodmedod's Split Dried Fava Beans
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • To serve: Cumin, Paprika, Olive oil

Method

  1. Place the fava beans and garlic in a large pan, and cover with 1.5 litres cold water. Cover the pan and cook on a medium high heat until they are soft enough to easily puree (about 40 minutes). Skim occasionally.
  2. Puree the beans and garlic, either by hand or in a food processor, according to your preferred texture. Stir in the olive oil, spices and lemon juice. The consistency can be adjusted: for a thinner soup, mix in more hot water; for a thicker dip, boil the beans with less water.
  3. Serve the bessara hot, drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with cumin and paprika.



Josiah Meldrum
Josiah Meldrum

Author



1 Response

Richard Dyson
Richard Dyson

May 21, 2017

I’ve been a fan of fava beans and Hodmedod’s for years and this was one of the earliest recipes and remains for me one of the best. I want to share a recent tweak I’ve made.
I cook the 500g pack of split Hodmedod’s organic fava beans unsoaked in a pressure cooker with three peeled cloves of garlic and half a teaspoon of turmeric. I give 10-12 minutes of high pressure then natural release.
Then I drain through a sieve capturing some of the liquid. Blitz the solids with another clove of raw garlic. Then add cumin, pepper, salt, paprika. Use the liquid to thin the mix back to your chosen consistency (I like it much runnier than in the picture). Now for the two, killer ingredients: a couple of teaspoons of Harissa paste and a few big splashes of sherry vinegar. It’s hot, tangy, garlicky and sweetish. Eat cold as a dip. Once it’s been in the fridge it cakes up into something like pate – which is great in lunch boxes.

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