Fuul (Somali-Style Fava Bean Stew)

Fuul (Somali-Style Fava Bean Stew)

Fuul is a beloved fava bean stew that has long been woven into the culinary fabric of East Africa, North Africa and the Middle East. It’s also known as ful medames or foul mudammas. This comforting stew is served in a variety of ways: slow-simmered whole beans topped with juicy tomatoes and olive oil or simply crushed and spritzed with lemon juice. This recipe is for Somali-style fuul, which consists of smashed fava beans and receives its intoxicating smell from the xawaash mix. Fuul is eaten for breakfast alongside eggs and fresh anjero and is perfect for suhoor or iftar.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    In a medium pot or deep skillet over medium heat, warm up the olive oil. Once the olive oil is hot, add the onion and stir. Let the onions cook, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and almost translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Step 2

    Once the onions have cooked, add in the garlic and let it cook until it softens, about 2 minutes. Add the roughly chopped tomatoes and let them cook, stirring occasionally, for 7 to 8 minutes or until they start to break down. Add the salt.
  3. Step 3

    While the tomato mixture cooks, prepare the Xawaash mix: Add the cumin, coriander, black pepper, cinnamon and cardamom to a small nonstick pan. Toast over low heat, stirring continuously, for 1 minute or until the spice mix becomes fragrant.
  4. Step 4

    Add the Xawaash mix to the simmering tomato and onions. While the tomatoes finish cooking, add the rinsed fava beans to a medium bowl and use a pestle to mash them until there are almost no whole beans left. Stir the mashed beans into the tomatoes.
  5. Step 5

    Stir in the tomato sauce, 1 cup of water and the chopped cilantro leaves into the bean and tomato mixture. Cover the pan and simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Stir in up to an additional ⅓ cup of water if the stew gets too thick.
  6. Step 6

    Serve the fuul with anjero, if desired. Leftovers keep for about a week in the refrigerator.