The story goes that when the foreigner had been thoroughly over fed by the Lebanese man, and declined more food saying “I’m full”, the Lebanese man screamed to the kitchen “Foul, foul, bring some foul for my friend”.
This was my favourite dish from the minute I landed in Lebanon. I wasn’t allowed to serve it at the Beirut Silent Dinner Party, as it is breakfast food, not to be served at such a late hour. However, twisting things in the true Australian way, this dish was the main event at the Adelaide Fringe Festival, 2012.
I was taught to cook it on a Lebanese mountain top by a wonderful spirit named Patrick Mitri. We didn’t have a working stove in the house, so we cooked it on a little electric hot plate in the lounge room.
Here’s Patrick’s Foul, now one of my favourite dishes and all time Sunday brunch bonanzas.
1 tin cooked Fava beans, drained and rinsed.
2 cloves garlic
juice of 1/4 lemon
2 handfuls chopped fresh mint
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 cup Olive Oil
A handful of flat leaf parsley, chopped.
Grind up the garlic, lemon juice and salt in mortar and pestle, place it in a skillet with a tablespoon of Olive Oil on medium heat with the fava beans and 1 handful of mint. You can add some chick peas here if you like. Cook for about 10 minutes, adding a dash of hot water if it dries up and stirring occasionally. Dice up the tomatoes to small cubes and add them to the pan with the second handful of mint and the cayenne pepper. Cook for a further 5 mins, still adding small dashes of water if the mix dries up but don’t add too much to make the beans sloppy.
Place in a serving bowl and cover the top in the rest of the Olive oil and a handful of chopped flat leaf parsley. Good served with flat bread.