These brown beans are the quintessential Egyptian breakfast: healthy, and hearty. You can find them in cafes and shops everywhere, with large vats of simmering beans, ready to be ladled out. Making this dish with canned beans makes the traditional hours-long preparation only a few minutes.

  Time: 40 minutes
  Difficulty: easy
  Serves: 4


  • 150 g tahini

  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • several generous pinches ground cumin, in two batches: one for the tahini, one for the fava beans.

  • small pinch ground coriander

  • juice of 1 lemon

  • salt to taste

  • 500 g canned fava beans, plus the liquid

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 onion, sliced into rings and sprinkled with salt and vinegar

  • 4 hard boiled eggs, peeled and cut into halves

  • 100 g feta cheese, crumbled

  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves or parsley

  • pickled chillies, to taste

  • To serve: Soft pita or other flatbread


Place tahini in a bowl and fluff up with a spoon or fork, adding the garlic, cumin, coriander, lemon juice and salt. When thick, thin it out with a little water until it reaches the consistency you like – I suggest like thick-ish cream.

Set the prepared tahina sauce aside.

Heat the fava beans in a saucepan, with their juices, adding a little bit of water if needed; season with salt and cumin to taste.

When beans are warmed through and still soupy, serve in a shallow soup bowl, drizzled generously with the tahina sauce, garnished with olive oil, the salted, vinegared onions, the eggs, feta, chopped parsley or coriander leaves, and pickled chillies if desired.

Serve with warm pita.