Fava Bean and rice (Fouliyeh)

February 11, 2010  •  Category:


Let’s face it. Lebanese cuisine is in essence a cuisine for poor folks;  (maybe that’s why the bleeding heart liberal that I am loves it). The good news is that it is also VERY HEALTHY!

Now I know this looks like prison gruel, but it tastes exquisite; something about the pomegranate molasses, garlic, caramelized onions and  garlic end up making this poor man’s  dish mighty good!

INGREDIENTS: 6 servings

  • 8 ounces of dried fava beans, previously cooked in at least 6 cups of water for two hours or till tender.
  • 1 can of chick peas (garbanzos), rinsed and drained
  • 2 large onions, sliced (more if using for garnish)
  • olive oil, as needed
  • 1 tablespoon of mashed garlic (if you are squeamish about using that much, use less!)
  • 1/4 cup of pomegranate molasses
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 2 cups of Italian or Turkish or Egyptian or sushi rice


  1. Heat some olive oil and brown the onions: that’s the tricky part, one minute of inattention and the onions turn black!
  2. Add the fava beans and drained chick peas. Add the cumin, garlic,  pomegranate molasses, bacon salt if using, a bit more olive oil and stir fry for one minute.
  3. Add the rice and fry 30 seconds more. Add 4 to 6 cups  of water (can do so gradually). Cover the pan and let the water simmer for 30 minutes. Uncover and stir, checking to see if the rice needs more water.
  4. Cook until the rice is done. Check seasoning, adding a bit of this or that, some salt.
  5. Serve with yogurt on the side (traditionally, goat yogurt is served with this dish)

Source for the recipe, (adapted):  Chef Ramzi Culinary Heritage of Lebanon. Dish is from the region of Tripoli.


21 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Sushma Mallya says:

    looks healthy and yummy,..

  2. Cherine says:

    It’s true it’s a very healthy dish. I never had fava beans with rice, thanks for sharing, I will definitely try it soon.

  3. Rosa says:

    This dish can’t be more healthy and tasty! Yummy!



  4. Priya says:

    Fantastic rice…sounds new for me..

  5. Sophie says:

    What a grand dish this is!! Fab presentation too!

    I so love all of its flavours,…great food!

  6. oum mouncifrayan says:

    miammm, de belles recettes comme toujours par ici!! bravo

  7. Maninas says:

    This is gorgeous! Will definitely make it.

  8. Jamie says:

    Poor man’s food or not this is so my kind of food! How luscious does that look! And the flavors sound incredible! I love beans both fava and chickpeas, but throw in some caramelized onions and a dash of pomegranite molasses and it’s pure heaven! I must try this recipe!

  9. Rachana Kothari says:

    Wow!!! This rice dish looks so tasty!!! and as usual a very lovely click:)

  10. Simply Life says:

    oh i love the use of fava beans in this!

  11. delices eyes says:

    Très savoureuse cette préparation.
    Bonne journée

  12. Arlette says:

    I never had this dish… my mom cooks the fresh foul only,
    another new dish

  13. Camille says:

    I always wondered what to do with dried fava beans! Thanks for the idea!

  14. Asmaa says:

    Très appétissante cette recette

  15. Nathalie says:

    Un très beau plat … c’est une cuisine que je ne connais pas et que je suis ravie de découvrir ! Merci pour ce partage. Bises

  16. SE says:

    Hey..this looks so much like an Indian dish…I don’t like to call any dish as poor man’s meal cos the food is more nourishing and more healthy !!! I see lot of pomogranate molasses in yours and iranian cooking..am planning to get one..

  17. TastyTrix says:

    I am all peasant, I guess. I love bread and cheese, and beans and rice – and I ADORE fava beans. I mean, really truly love them. Gobble them up. On the rare occasions there are fresh ones at the store, I will knock people down to get some! (not really, just in my head) So this is a must-make for me.

  18. spice says:

    Very much like Khichdi(indian dish), only difference is we mainly use lentils instead of beans, but no pomegranate molasses…..TO me it looks like comfort food…also easy One pot dish. Thanks for sharing

  19. sarah says:

    Oh here it is. I was looking for that recipe after reading you comment on Kano’s blog, sounds interesting, I will definitely try it. Doesn’t look too bad I think, either. Have you had Tunisian lablabi? It definitely looks worse (but is delicious).

  20. Hala says:

    Thanks for sharing this recipe from my country. Btw, ours is a cuisine that works for poor and rich folks alike: we use a few simple ingredients, which is ideal for those of us short on time but who like good tasting food. If you so the opulence (and huge national debt!) that is typical in Lebanon, you wouldn’t associate our cuisine with low income 🙂 I hope Lebanese food will always be affordable, and I’ll always associated with a Lebanese sense of good taste (and expensive make up, exquisite hair do’s, designer clothes, debt-inducing cars,… sigh!).

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