Ramadan and Eid Sugar Cookies

 
These addictive sugar cookies are delectably soft and have notes of coconut and vanilla. They are the perfect dough to work with when cutting out shapes. The cookies are perfectly soft and chewy, yet the dough is nicely firm when rolling it out to cut into shapes. 

Ramadan cookies

ramadan cookie cutter

We are all about making Eid and Ramadan as fun as can be. These are beautiful and joyous occasions, and Ramadan is the holiest month of the year for Muslims. To make this time of year memorable and special for my family, I indulge in Ramadan and Eid themed crafts, activities, service projects, cooking, and baking. Ramadan and Eid cookies are a must on our list!

Ramadan and Eid Sugar cookies

Ramadan and Eid cookies

Sugar cookies shaped as crescents, masjids, lanterns and stars.

 The traditional petit four Eid cookies and “maamool” that we usually make are a more labor intensive, persnickety cookie so I had to come up with a more kid friendly, hands on alternative. What better option than a scrumptious sugar cookie, that the kids can help roll out and cut into their favorite shapes! Of course, making your own sugar icing, letting little ones stir up the colors, and decorate the cookies is the the best part. We had a blast making these and I didn’t have to stress out about the process or careful design as I do with my petit fours!

I tried several sugar cookie recipes, and this modified version from allrecipes.com was fantastic. I added some light brown sugar to make it a softer, gooey-er cookie. I also incorporated some coconut flour (1 cup out of the 5) and vanilla extract for some hints of flavor. You could omit the coconut flour and just use regular, or substitute some almond flour instead of the coconut. These offer great flavor variation and a softer texture.

When refrigerated properly, the cookie dough rolls out very nicely, and allows you to get a nice clean cut with the cookie shapes.2014-07-17sugarandgarlic2014-2 2014-07-19sugarandgarlic2014-7 Ramadan cookies

Islamic cookie cutter

These deliciously scrumptious cookies start and end with frosting! I start by whipping a creamy mixture of brown sugar, white sugar, and butter, which is essentially a creamy  brown sugar frosting. For the dough, you need to work with softened butter, not melted or cold butter. So go ahead and take out the butter and set it out on your counter RIGHT NOW (because you really want to make these!) Then after these cookies are baked and cooled, we top them with an EASY and gorgeous home-made icing with bold hues of blue, yellow, and green. 

Once you have mixed the dough, it will be soft and creamy, so it is essential to refrigerate the dough for AT LEAST two hours if you want to easily cut out your shapes and have clean lines. Otherwise, the dough is too soft and too sticky, and your cut cookies my crumble or fall apart when transferring and shaping. So plan ahead and leave enough time to cool the dough. I also stick some of the dough into the freezer after working with it for about 20 minutes if I need to take a break or if the dough starts warming up again and getting too floppy. To make my gorgeous Ramadan themed shapes, I found these fantastic cookie cutters on Amazon.com, a world of almost any product you can imagine. These specific cookie cutters seem to be out of stock unfortunately, but there are these wonderful linzer cookie cutters as well as these awesome stencils you could use to spray or sprinkle on beautiful designs to your cookie shapes. I just love it (Amazon that is), because I always find what I need and it ships immediately! The cookie cutters are great too; I have used and washed them several times and they hold up great. Just don’t put them in the dishwasher!

roll out the dough

Roll the dough out onto a floured surface.

refrigerated dough

The icing used here is SUPER easy. No need to buy any. I don’t use any fancy meringue powder or spend energy whipping and frothing raw egg whites. This is purely sugar melted into a teaspoon of vanilla extract and a couple of spoons of milk (you can also use water). It hardens very nicely and is very easy to work with. I also add a spoon of corn syrup to give the icing a nice shiny gloss. I divide the icing into several bowls, depending on how many colors I want to use. To decorate properly, I first make a thicker icing to hold in the interior thinner icing. This makes it easier to fill your cookie with a smooth, clean layer of colorful design. Once all the cookies are edged, you can “flood” the cookie with thinner icing by adding another spoon of milk to the mix and stirring until incorporated. 

how to make icing

All you need is: powdered sugar, vanilla extract, milk, and food coloring. Use plastic sandwich bags and a cup to help pipe out the icing.

I pipe the icing with a plastic sandwich bag (any type will do), which I fill by draping it over a cup, with the corner (the piping tip) pointing downward in the cup. Once the bag is filled with icing, I snip off a half centimeter tip from the corner to start making my edge design. I sometimes use simple sandwich ziploc bags, but these piping bags by Wilton are much better because of their conical shape. 

how to make icing

piping icing

Use a plastic sandwich bag and insert it into a cup, with the corner of the bag pointing down, to facilitate filling with icing or frosting.

piping icing

how to ice a sugar cookie

First draw in the edges with thicker icing, made with less milk.

By the time you finish icing all the edges with the thicker icing, the edges should be hardened and you can begin to “flood” the inside of the cookie with a slightly thinner icing by adding 1 more tablespoon of milk to the mixture. Even if the icing hardened in the bowl, dont worry it will dissolve and mix again once you stir it up. 

how to ice a sugar cookie

Then “flood” the cookie with a slightly thinner icing after the edges have hardened.

Ramadan and Eid cookies

You may also want to use some colorful non-pareils sprinkles to let the kids sprinkle (or pour) some over the cookies when the icing is still soft. This is the funnest (and messiest) part afterall! Nothing a vacuum or broom can’t fix; so enjoy the moment!

icing and sprinkles Ramadan and Eid cookies 2014-07-20sugarandgarlic2014-7

Ramadan and Eid Sugar Cookies
Yields 24
A delicious buttery sugar cookie that makes it easy and fun to cut out the perfect shapes!
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For the cookie
  1. 1 1/2 c unsalted butter, softened
  2. 1 c white sugar
  3. 1 light brown sugar
  4. 4 eggs
  5. 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  6. 4 c all purpose flour
  7. 1 c coconut flour, or almond flour
  8. 2 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt
For the icing
  1. 2 c powdered sugar
  2. 3 tbsp milk + 1 tbsp milk to thin it later in process
  3. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  4. 1-2 tbsp of corn syrup
  5. food coloring (gel or powder) **
For the cookie
  1. Whip the sugars and butter together until creamy.
  2. Add the eggs and vanilla extract.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl. Then gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture.
  4. Roll the dough into a ball, cover completely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  5. Remove the dough from the fridge (preheat the oven to 350 degrees) and knead it gently to soften it slightly. Roll the dough out onto a floured surface, with a floured rolling pin. Roll the dough out to be 1 inch thick, or 1/2 inch for thinner cookies.
  6. Cut the shapes as desired, and lay onto an ungreased baking sheet*.
  7. Cover the cut out cookies on the baking sheet with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20- 30 minutes. This will ensure the cookies hold their shape while baking, instead of spreading out.
  8. Bake for 6-8 minutes. I like to remove when still soft as the cookie will harden after cooling.
  9. Allow to cool completely for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
For the icing
  1. If you plan to fill most cookies completely with icing, double this recipe ;)
  2. Stir the 3 tbsp of milk and vanilla together.
  3. Sift the powdered sugar and slowly whisk it into the milk using a mixer set on low. If stirring by hand, make SURE to sift the sugar first to avoid any lumps!
  4. Once all the sugar is stirred into the milk into a creamy consistency, add the corn syrup.
  5. Divide the icing into 2-3 bowls to make different colors and add the food coloring.
  6. Lay out the cookies on a large work surface, over parchment paper or foil. Pipe the edges with the thicker icing first. Once the edges have dried, which will happen while you finish icing all the other cookies, you can begin to fill the interior of the cookie with thinner icing. Thin the remaining icing with another spoon of milk so that is slightly more viscous. Be careful not to make it too thin, as this will be difficult to work with and will take a very long time to dry and harden!
  7. Allow the cookies to dry overnight or 12 hours before stacking on top of each other.
Notes
  1. * the baking sheet used in the test recipes was a large baking sheet light in color (not dark).
  2. * If using gel food coloring, be careful and only add a tiny drop at a time! Some colors are VERY saturated and will completely change the color of the icing if you put too much!
Adapted from Allrecipes.com
Adapted from Allrecipes.com
Sugar & Garlic http://www.sugarandgarlic.com/

Upside-down Peach Cake

Nothing smells like summer better than some perfectly ripe and sweet juicy peaches. The smell is just heavenly.

fresh peach sliced peaches

The peaches are fantastic this summer. I sampled one at the store, was knocked off my feet with its peachy perfect scent and sweetness, so I bought a huge crate. Then when I was at home feeding my kids peach after peach, I was worried they would run out at the market, so I went back the next day and bought more. Then I had several large crates of big, juicy, golden peaches. I bit off more than I could chew, and thought I needed to start baking some delicious treats. This peach cake was hands down our favorite!

peach upside-down cake

I took the concept of a pineapple upside down cake and swapped the pineapple for some equally golden and gorgeous peaches. I used my basic yellow cake recipe and deepened the flavor with a caramel texture by subbing out the white sugar for some sweet dense brown sugar. I also added moisture with some sweet peach juice and pureed peaches! What a perfect match. The sweet caramelized topping of the peaches dripping over the moist peach infused cake is just divine. I really intended to eat this with some ice cream. But it seems we ate it all up before I made it to the grocery store to buy some! Oh and make sure you have some people around to help you eat when you bake this cake, because it is that good. Unless you have better self control than me.

peach cake slice

Serve it up with vanilla ice cream on the side!

The cake whips up very quickly and easily and you don’t even need a mixer. I use fresh juice from these ripe peaches in the batter, which was really no problem extracting since the juice was literally dripping all over while I peeled and sliced the peaches. Any peach that got a bit goofed up while slicing, just gets tossed into the blender to puree for the batter.  Some will ask, “Can I use canned peaches?” Yes, you can but that is not as flavorful, fresh, and clean as using delicious fresh tree ripe peaches. Preservative free and whole-some baking for me! Use firm, ripe peaches, not overly ripe peaches as they will be hard to slice and peel. I found it easiest to first slice the peaches with the skin on, then stripped off the peel off of each slice. Somehow, that thin skin actually holds together all that juicy flesh.

sliced peaches

fresh peach puree

Fresh peach puree- made some great baby food as well!

peach floral design

Fleur de peach

So back to this recipe.

I arranged the peach slices in a pretty round flower design on the bottom of my pan. Notice I used a spring form pan, thinking it will be easier to pop out the cake. Horrible idea. The butter from the caramel sauce dripped all over my oven. I don’t know what I was thinking. At least I realized this before I put it in the oven and set the pan on top of a larger baking sheet. What a mess that made! And I probably lost some of that oozy gooey carmel topping! Hey, it happens. Use a regular round cake pan, not a springform 😉

I mixed the sugar and eggs with some coconut oil and olive oil followed by the pureed peaches. Then combine the flour mixture, and some moisture with yogurt and milk, and you are set for a seriously deliciously moist cake!

pour batter over the peach slices peach upside down cake

This is a moist cake, so it will bake for 35-45 minutes. Mine took exactly 39 minutes.

 peach upside down cake peach upside down cake peach upside down cake

Upside-down Peach Cake
A deliciously moist peach cake, topped with caramelized fresh juicy peaches.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 eggs
  2. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  3. 3/4 c brown sugar
  4. 1/2 c white sugar
  5. 1/2 c olive oil or 1/4 olive oil and 1/4 coconut oil
  6. 1/4 c vanilla or plain yogurt
  7. 2 c all purpose flour
  8. 4 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt
  10. 1 tsp cinnamon
  11. 1/2 c pureed fresh peaches
For the peach topping (at the bottom of the pan)
  1. 1/4 c unsalted butter, melted
  2. 1/2 c brown sugar
  3. 4-5 peaches, sliced and peeled
For the topping
  1. Pour the melted butter on the bottom of the pan. Evenly sprinkle the brown sugar over the butter. Be sure to sift any lumps. Place the sliced peaches over the butter-sugar mixture evenly in a circular, floral design.
For the batter
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees (f).
  2. Whisk the eggs, vanilla extract, and sugars until frothy.
  3. Add the oil and pureed peaches to the egg mixture.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
  5. Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet egg and sugar mixture.
  6. Add the yogurt and stir; be careful not to over mix.
  7. Pour the batter carefully and evenly over the sliced peaches.
  8. Bake in oven for 35-45 minutes, until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  9. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before flipping onto serving dish.
Sugar & Garlic http://www.sugarandgarlic.com/

Garden Vegetable Linguine

This delicious linguine pasta dish features spinach, pea shoots, onion, and garlic, with some hearty portabella mushrooms and sweet red bell peppers. 

vegetable pasta

Pasta is such an essential go-to dish to create a flavorful and easy meal with a variety of vegetables and fresh ingredients. I love me a good farm-to- table meal; and these fresh chopped veggies from the farmer’s market are the perfect companions to pasta linguine. Even better, this a fast and easy quick meal, and even the busiest of us can whip up this gourmet dinner in no time!

sliced mushrooms and onions

Pasta has been getting the cold shoulder a lot lately with the ever increasing popularity of gluten free and low carb diets. Even I personally have been limiting my carbs lately and trying to eat a lot more whole and raw foods, but there will ALWAYS be a place for pasta in my life. The key is to utilize it as a vehicle for the fabulous fresh vegetables and sauces you create. My kids love to eat pasta, and I love to give it to them loaded with nutritious vegetables and ingredients.

Pasta is also an excellent dish when you need a carb loaded meal to give a boost of energy such as at the end of a long Ramadan day of fasting!

I love this recipe because it is fast, fresh, and easy. No sooner than you finish reading this post, you can whip up this quick gourmet meal.

sautee mushrooms in garlic oil

Sautee the mushrooms and peppers in the garlic oil.

add spinach and pea shoots

Add the spinach and pea shoots at the very end.

I simply use inspiration from the fresh produce available. At the farmer’s market I picked up some pea shoots for the first time (at the suggestion of my friend), fresh spinach leaves, portabella mushrooms, red bell peppers and tomatoes.  I made a quick marinara sauce with all the tomatoes I got, then used the remainder of the vegetables to make a delicious rainbow of textures and flavor. I always start by sautéing some onions or garlic, in some olive oil or in this case both. Then add in the mushrooms and peppers until they start to become tender, and add the leafy spinach and pea shoots at the end so that they do not get too soft and release water. I toss this fabulous mixture with the pasta and drizzle my delicious homemade marinara over it, and we have a gorgeous and colorful meal in no time!

toss in linguine

Like a classic Italian chef, toss the linguine in all the delicious ingredients.

Garnish with fresh basil or parsley. Bon a petit! 

 

 

garden vegetable pasta

Garden Vegetable Linguine
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Prep Time
8 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
13 min
Prep Time
8 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
13 min
Ingredients
  1. 6-8 portabella mushrooms (2 cups sliced)
  2. 1 cup chopped fresh spinach
  3. 1/2 cup pea shoots, parsley, or scallions (optional)
  4. 1 red bell pepper, diced
  5. 1/2 cup marinara sauce or sliced tomatoes
  6. 1/2 onion, sliced
  7. 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  8. 2 tbsp olive oil
  9. 1 lb linguine pasta
  10. salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 tsp salt)
Instructions
  1. Boil the linguine pasta in water with olive oil until al dente (about 8 minutes), and drain.
  2. While the pasta boils, slice the mushrooms, pepper, onion, and garlic. The spinach only need a rough chop; it will decrease in size considerably over the heat.
  3. Sautee the onion and garlic slices in the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and red pepper and toss for about 1 minute. If using fresh tomato slices instead of marinara, add the tomato slices. Add the spinach and pea shoots and toss gently. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Remove from heat and immediately toss in the linguine pasta. If using the marinara sauce, toss in the sauce at this point. Serve hot.
Sugar & Garlic http://www.sugarandgarlic.com/

The Best Marinara Sauce (from scratch)

This is not only extremely easy and fast to make, but the best recipe yet. I love a good marinara sauce because it is so basic and essential in so many recipes: spaghetti, linguine, lasagne, casserole, grilled vegetables, shrimp stir-fry, stuffed zucchini and peppers,  eggplant parmesan, and the list goes on! Every chef needs this in their repertoire and in their kitchen.

best marinara sauce

With a zesty base of herbs and balsamic vinegar simply simmer tomatoes, onions, and garlic!

Not only is this easy and delicious, it comes from fresh, whole organic tomatoes. I was surprise at how many “from scratch” recipes for marinara included the use of canned tomatoes. I love eating clean and using fresh tomatoes to make this aromatic sauce, and nothing smells more amazing than a home with the scent of this sauce drifting throughout! YUM! I used vine-ripened tomatoes and puree them in my blender with half an onion. If you have especially delicious and juicy sweet tomatoes you can also add some chunks to the sauce to simmer as well. This will lend to a chunkier sauce of course.

2014-06-29sugarandgarlic2014-7 2014-06-29sugarandgarlic2014-8 tomatoes, garlic, onions, oregano, basil, parsley blending tomatoes

 I gently sauté chopped onion, garlic, and the herbs (parsley, basil, and oregano) until fragrant, pour the tomato puree all over, and then pour in the secret ingredient that gives this that extra zing. Two tablespoons of good, potent balsamic vinegar give this sauce the kick it needs, making it perfectly zesty and balancing the sweetness of the tomatoes.  That’s all there is to this easy, fast, and hearty sauce. Contrary to what some imagine to be an all day simmer in the pot routine, the sauce only takes about 20-30 minutes to cook on medium high heat, because we do not want to break down the tomatoes too much. I often add fresh chopped mushrooms and bell peppers to the sauce in the last 5 minutes to use it as a chunky garden vegetable marinara. Sprinkle in some parmesan cheese, sliced olives, additional herbs or spices to diversify the flavors and make this sauce your own. Every kitchen needs a great marinara sauce and it’s a beautiful thing when you can whip up your own from whole tomatoes and know you are eating clean, fresh, and organic ingredients. 

best marinara sauce

 You can also easily adjust this to be a basic tomato sauce puree to use in endless recipes such as soups, stews, and casseroles! So forget about buying canned tomato sauce and start growing some tomatoes instead 🙂 I omit the herbs and balsamic vinegar and simply simmer the pureed tomatoes with onions and garlic to use this in a variety of dishes.

simmer pureed tomatoes best marinara sauce marinara sauce

 

marinara sauce from scratch

 

 

The Best Marinara Sauce
This homemade sauce is so easy and flavorful, you will love to use this recipe in all your dishes!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 8-10 vine ripened tomatoes
  2. 1 tbsp olive oil
  3. 1 medium size onion, diced
  4. 6 cloves of garlic, minced
  5. 1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley (fresh)
  6. 1/2 cup chopped basil (fresh), plus extra leaves for garnish
  7. 1 1/2 tsp oregano (dried or fresh)
  8. 1 tsp salt
  9. 1/4 tsp black pepper
  10. 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. Puree the tomatoes with half of the onion in a blender or food processor. You may add a tablespoon of water to help liquify the tomatoes in the blender.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high heat, sauté the remaining chopped onion and minced garlic in the olive oil until it becomes yellow. Add the parsley, basil, and oregano and heat for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
  3. Pour the pureed tomatoes over the herbs. Add the balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. Simmer for 20-30 minutes until it thickens.
  4. Serve over warm pasta, vegetables, or chicken parmesan.
  5. Store remaining sauce in airtight containers in fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for 6 months.
Notes
  1. Add fresh chopped vegetables such as mushrooms or bell peppers to enjoy as a chunky garden vegetable sauce.
Sugar & Garlic http://www.sugarandgarlic.com/

The BEST Ful Mudammas (stewed fava beans) from scratch

Ful mudammas (pronounced f-ool, rhyming with pool or tool, but why would I spell it like that, or foul? Don’t want to give the wrong impression here 😉 )  is a vegetarian dish that is a staple food item in Egypt. It is the national dish of Egypt. You cannot go to Egypt without trying ful at least several times. It is eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, but most often as breakfast. It consists of cooked fava beans, olive oil , lemon juice, garlic, spices, and a variety of fresh chopped ingredients such as tomato, green onions, and parsley. My recipe consists of a fusion of Egyptian, Palestinian, and Syrian influences, and it is delicious. In my typical recipe, I add tahini sauce and chickpeas in addition to the typical Egyptian flavorings. If I do not add tahini, I go the Egyptian route, taught to me by my mother, and simmer it in tomato sauce, extra garlic, and extra onion. This method is great for dinner, and is a MUST TRY if you have not tried it yet. These preparations are both incredibly delicious and nutritious!  2014-06-24sugarandgarlic2014-33  Everyone who has had this recipe loves it and comes back for seconds, and the biggest problem we ever have is not having enough. Ful Mudammas is the Arabic phrase to describe how the dish is cooked. Mudammas means figuratively that the beans are cooked thoroughly over a long period in the pot, taken from its literal definition of “being buried in the pot”. So this is a dish you want to spend the day simmering away in a pot, if making from scratch. And that is exactly what we do here in this recipe. If you are using a can full of preservatives, sodium, and beans not nearly as fresh as the beans I pick up from my local farm, it is usually already mudammas and you just need to reheat it and add your garnishings. That is no fun if you ask me. Unlike most recipes for ful you will find, this does not originate from a can. In fact, most people are a little intimidated as to how to get the dried hard little beans to that infamous “mudammas” phase quoted so perfectly on the can. If you set aside one nice afternoon to do this, you can prepare enough ful and freeze it for later to last you a couple of months! You also get to control exactly what spices, flavors, and herbs are going in, and it’s preservative free 🙂 Two cheers for clean eating!

ful mudammas

Traditionally, ful is eaten scooped up with a piece of pita bread.

ful mudammas You can find the dried brown fava beans at any Arabic market, and most international markets. Make sure it is the small, brown bean, with a black mark on top. Do not get peeled, green, or the large fava beans because those are used differently. I get mine from the bulk bins at Whole Foods; they are organic and from a local farm. I cook about a pound at a time, which makes about 4-5 family sized (serving 4) portions or 10 single portions. So I estimate at least the equivalent of about 10 cans of ful. You want to wash and sort the beans. Because I love adding chick peas to my ful, I usually pressure cook a cup of chickpeas first, before the fava, for about 60 minutes. I set these aside while the ful is cooking. The kids LOVE eating the cooked chickpeas, plain with nothing added! What a perfectly healthy and fun snack for the kids! dried fava beans wash and sort the fava beansSimply cook the fava beans in a pressure cooker with water, onions, and garlic (no salt, it inhibits the cooking) for 60-90 minutes. There is no need to soak the beans overnight when you use a pressure cooker. Once the beans have cooked soft, I uncover the pressure top and continue to simmer it for another hour or so, this time with the spices, more garlic, and salt. We are getting those beans mudammas, or buried in flavor!

how to cook fava beans

Do not add salt, as it inhibits the cooking.

ful mudammas cooked fava beans Once the beans are nicely tender and deliciously infused with the garlic, onion, cumin, and lemon,  you can prepare it for being served. First, I take the extra batches and portion them into glass storage containers to freeze for later. When I am ready to serve it, I give it a light mashing (some people completely puree it), add olive oil, fresh squeezed lemon juice, a drizzle of tahini, some cooked chick peas, chopped tomatoes, parsley, and onions. The dish is served warm with pita bread. Ful mudammas is eaten across the Middle East and Africa in various methods: In Aleppo, it is often covered in tahini sauce, and sometimes a red pepper paste, in Palestine on a bed of hummus, others toss it in plain yogurt, or top it with sliced hard boiled eggs, feta cheese, olives, pastrami, fried or caramelized onions, pickled turnips and vegetables, arugula, and all sorts of toppings. It’s kind of like the eggs benedict of the Arab world. Ful benedict, if you will.

fresh chopped onions, parsley, and tomatoes

Fresh chopped onions, parsley, and tomatoes are typical toppings in Egypt.

fresh chopped onions, parsley, and tomatoes storing the cooked ful

storing the cooked ful

I use glass pyrex because they can go easily and safely into the microwave or oven.

Fava beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber, and this healthy recipe is quite filling and has minimal fat. It is an excellent and favorite meal for suhoor, which is a meal Muslims eat in early dawn before the daytime fast begins. Once you taste a batch of freshly stewed homemade ful, you will never go back to cans! Once you go scratch, you’ll never go back 😉

ful with pita

Ful is always eaten with pita bread!

ful mudammas

Ful Mudammas (from scratch)
Yields 12
The BEST recipe for ful mudammas, or stewed fava beans, cooked from scratch.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
2 hr
To cook the fava beans in a pressure cooker
  1. 1 lb of dried brown fava beans
  2. 10 cups of water
  3. 1 yellow onion, cut in half
  4. 4 cloves of garlic, sliced in half
To simmer the fava beans before serving
  1. 1/2 c lemon juice
  2. 2 tsp salt
  3. 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  4. 2 tbsp minced garlic
  5. 1 yellow onion, diced
  6. 1/4 tsp black pepper
  7. 3 tbsp olive oil
To serve 1 cup of stewed beans
  1. (optional) 1/4 cup cooked chickpeas, reserve some for garnish
  2. (optional) 1/4 cup tahini paste OR 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  3. 1/4 c fresh squeezed lemon juice (no lemon juice if cooking in tomato sauce)
  4. 1 tsp minced garlic
  5. 1 tomato, diced
  6. 1 green onion or scallion, diced
  7. 1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley, reserve some for garnish
  8. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Instructions
  1. Wash and sort the fava beans.
  2. Place beans into a pressure cooker, add the onion and garlic, and cover with 10-12 cups of water. Cook on high pressure for at least 60 minutes. Do not add salt, as it inhibits cooking.
  3. Once the beans are cooked soft, you can remove the lid and add the spices and additional diced garlic and onions, lemon juice, and olive oil. Simmer for another 30-60 minutes, until the beans are very tender and flavorful.
  4. Portion the cooked beans into storage containers or ziplocs and freeze; be sure to store it with some of the cooking liquid. If you will add cooked chickpeas, you can place them in the container and freeze them with the fava beans. When you are ready to serve the beans you simply can pour them into a pot to reheat it and add the final toppings.
To serve
  1. Simmer 1 cup of stewed fava beans with the tahini OR tomato sauce, and 1/4 cup of cooked chick peas, over medium-high heat. If there is not enough liquid with the beans, add 1/4 c water to prevent drying out the beans. Remove from heat after 5 minutes, or after most liquid is absorbed.
  2. If you like you beans softened, as Egyptians do, this is the time to mash them gently with a fork or masher. Some people even puree it smooth, but we definitely like some texture and chunky beans. After mashing the beans, add the lemon juice (omit if you are cooking in tomato sauce), chopped tomato, onions, garlic, and parsley. Add 1 tbsp of the olive oil. Toss lightly.
  3. Garnish with the remaining chickpeas and parsley on top, and drizzle remaining olive oil. Serve with warm pita bread.
Notes
  1. If you will serve the fava beans simmered in tomato sauce, you will omit the lemon juice because the tomato sauce provides enough acidity. You can add a dash of lemon or vinegar if you prefer.
  2. The flavor with the tahini or the tomato sauce make for two very different dishes. Try them both!
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