For those of you who are familiar with ful medames (aka foul moudamas), please please please try this recipe from scratch using a pressure cooker (or stovetop pot). I too have fallen to the convenience of eating ful medames from a can. And although it is easier to make ful medames from a can, this recipe is so much better and it's freezer-friendly.
Ful medames from scratch is taking dried fava beans, dried chickpeas, and dried red lentils, soaking them overnight, then cooking them over a low and slow stovetop setting (or pressure cooker). This is a batch recipe, meaning you will make a large amount. The extra ful medames can be stored in gallon or quart size freezer-friendly storage bags.
Freezer ful medames from scratch tastes way better than canned ful medames. When preparing ful (as a dip), it takes the same amount of time to prepare freezer ful medames as it does canned ful medames. Use this ful beans recipe as a dip or for ful toast.
What I Love About This Recipe
I love making things from scratch, but I don't want to spend hours in the kitchen. This ful medames recipe from scratch is a nice balance between the two. I can batch prepare dried fava beans from scratch and store them in the freezer. Anytime, I want to make ful medames for breakfast, it's literally done in 10 minutes. Not to mention, these ful medames beans from scratch taste way better than the canned stuff.
Dried beans: This recipe needs dried fava beans, dried chickpeas, and dried red lentils. There are a couple of variations for dried fava beans, so you need to make sure you get the right thing. You want to use dried fava beans that have a brownish outer skin covering the bean, not the split dried fava beans that are used for ta'ameya (falafel). Also, these fava beans should be medium to small-sized. There are some dried fava beans that are very large. You can see the different beans in the photo below in order to get the relative size and appearance.
How To Make Ful Medames From Dried Beans
Soak the fava beans, chickpeas, and lentils with some baking soda overnight or for a minimum of 6 hours. Once the beans have expanded in size, add the beans and vegetables to a pot. Cover the pot with 2" to 3" (5 cm to 8 cm) of water over the beans.
If cooking the beans in a pressure cooker (Instant Pot or a conventional stovetop pressure cooker), cook the beans on high heat for around 1.5 hours. Bleed the pressure, then check the beans if they are easy to crush between your fingers.
If cooking the beans in a stovetop pot, bring the beans to a boil then turn the heat down to medium-low. Cover the pot and cook for 4 to 5 hours. Add water throughout the cooking time, making sure the beans are covered at all times with water.
Important: If cooking the beans over the stovetop, the moisture escapes very easily, make sure the beans have enough liquid in the pot. I always make sure the beans have at least 1" (2.5 cm) at all times of water.
The beans are done cooking when they are completely tender. Check each type of bean (fava, chickpea, and lentil), by squishing the bean between your fingers. If the bean is not tender and soft, continue cooking. This is a long process until the beans are completely cooked.
Once the beans are finished cooking, check the liquid in the pot. If there is a lot of liquid, drain the beans from the liquid keeping about 1.5 to 2 cups of the cooking liquid. Add the liquid back to the drained beans. Using a hand blender, mix the beans to your desired consistency.
Continue blending the beans using the hand immersion blender.
I prefer my ful medames bean consistency to be similar to refried beans.
How To Make Ful Medames Dip
Up until this point, all we have done is make the beans. Now, we need to season and prepare the ful medames dip as the amazing breakfast dish that it is.
If you are starting with frozen ful medames, the only thing you need to do is reheat the ful medames in a nonstick skillet over medium heat with about ½ cup of water. You can cut away the freezer-friendly storage bag with some scissors or defrost the frozen ful bean bag in some water.
Chop the cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions finely to about the same size. Mash some garlic. In a separate small bowl, add the mashed garlic, tahini, lime juice, ground cumin, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Mix this tahina mixture well.
In a large bowl, add the cooked ful medames beans on the bottom. Top with the chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions. Mix in the garlic tahini dip. Mix the ful medames dip all together. Pour some more olive oil on top.
Tips and Tricks
- Cook time depends on cooking method: An Instant Pot of conventional stovetop pressure cooker will cut your cook time atleast by half. Using a stovetop pot takes longer, however, some people like to cook the beans low and slow.
- Soak the beans: Don't skip this step! The beans need some time to swell and soften prior to cooking. At a minimum, soak the beans for 6 hours, but ideally, you can soak the beans overnight. Also, you need to add about ½ teaspoon of baking soda to the soaking beans to help soften up the outer skin of the beans.
How to Store Ful Beans In The Freezer
You can store the ful beans, not the bean dip, in the freezer. The bean dip has the chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions which don't freeze well.
Let the ful beans cool to room temperature. Scoop the mixture into a freezer-friendly bag. Label the bag with the contents and date. Stack the bags flat on top of each other in the freezer. I store my ful in quart-sized freezer-friendly bags with enough ful beans for 2 to 4 servings.