Tag Archives: Bean

Refried Beans

This is our favorite recipe for refried beans!  We use it in tortillas, with guacamole, or chips.  Also, we love to make no-queso quesadillas with it (recipe coming soon!)
Serves about 6 Click here for the printer-friendly version.
2 400 g cans of pinto beans, washed and drained

1 onion, chopped fine
3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
1 fresh green jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and chopped fine (optional)

2 teaspoon paprika powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1.  In a skillet, heat the olive oil and onions for 2 minutes.
2.  Add the garlic and chili pepper and fry for another 2 minutes.

3.  Add spices and stir for 30 seconds. Don’t let them burn or stick to the pan.

4.  Add the beans and stir fry for 3 minutes, making sure the spices have coated the beans.

5.  Add chopped tomatoes, stir for another few minutes.
6.  Add tomato paste and stir through.

7.  When the beans are soft enough, mash them either with a potato masher. You can mash them to the consistency you like.  Some people want creamy refried beans and others like to have whole beans in the mix.

8.  Remove from the heat and serve as you like.
Serving Suggestions and Variations:
  • Serve as a filling for hearty no-queso quesadillas.
  • Use in burritos, tacos, on nachos…
  • Serve as a side dish…
  • Add more jalapeno peppers or chili powder to up the spiciness!
  • Experiment with other kinds of beans.

Nutrition Information: 1 of 6 servings
172 Calories; 4 g Fat; 0 mg Cholesterol; 29 g Carbohydrates; 8 g Fiber; 8 g Protein

*This recipe is filling and highly nutritious, and is therefore rated as an excellent choice for weight loss.

Alf Hana!!!


Tuesday Teaser #9: Deep Dish Cookie Pie

Oh my word!

This deep dish cookie pie is so delicious you won’t be able to resist it!

I couldn’t stop photographing it, either.  It was so yummy!

And it’s not hard to make, either!!!

Not to mention how nutritious it is because of the secret ingredient!  In fact, this recipe is gluten free (doesn’t have wheat) and even is relatively low in fat.

WAIT – I won’t tell you the secret ingredient [Don’t worry you can find it in Egypt]- you’ll have to go to Chocolate Covered Katie’s blog and see the recipe there!   But, you will DEFINITELY not regret trying it!!!!

Thank you so much for your great ideas, Chocolate Covered Katie!  We are loving them!

Nutritional Information: (1 of 12 slices)

308 Calories; 9 g Fat; 0 mg Cholesterol; 55 g Carbohydrates; 5 g Fiber; 6 g Protein

(and it’s high in iron, calcium, and vitamin A!)

Alf Hana!!!

Spicy Pinto Bean Soup

Are you trying to lose weight?  Maybe you’re just trying to not gain any more!  Well, we have been trying to maintain a healthy weight for a while.  One of the tricks we use is to look for highly nutritious, but low calorie food.  Beans and vegetables are the perfect for for this!!!
The base of this soup is the pinto bean.  The pinto bean is mostly known in North American and is very common in Mexican food.  If you go to a Mexican restaurant, you will probably eat these mashed or refried or in a burrito.  I love pinto beans!  Unfortunately, I have never found dried pinto beans in Egypt, so we always use them from a can.
This soup is kind of spicy, so adjust as you need!
Serves about 5Ingredients:
1 can pinto beans (about 500 g)
4 small to medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
1 large onion
1 vegetable bouillon cube, crumbled
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, (hot green peppers) diced
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
water to cover (about 500 ml)Instructions:
1.  Place everything in a large pot.
2.  Add enough water to cover the beans and vegetables.
3.  Cover and simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes.
4.  Check frequently and add more water if necessary.

Add an extra jalapeño pepper for more ZING!
Serving Suggestions and Variations:
  • Serve with cornbread, balady bread, or any grain.
  • Guacamole might even go well with this spicy soup!

Nutritional Information (1 serving of 5):
116 Calories; 1 g Fat; 0 mg Cholesterol; 22 g Carbohydrates; 6 g Fiber; 6 g Protein

What’s YOUR favorite bean?!
Alf Hana!!!

Egyptians got a fever for fava! (Foul Medammes)

Along with koushari and molokheyia, fava beans are the three staple foods of Egypt.  Once this post is published, you’ll be able to cook the basic Egyptian foods in vegan variations (most of them started out that way, anyway)!

I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that fava beans are eaten thousands of ways in Egypt.  Known as foul (pronounced ‘fool’), the fava beans lend themselves to so many different flavors and cooking techniques, it’s hard to keep track!  In fact, you could probably write an entire blog just about how to cook and season fava beans!

Egyptians eat foul for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  You can find them gathering in the morning around small carts savoring warm foul with fresh bread on their way to work.  You can hear the man selling foul in the evening walking by and calling out “fooooooooooooool!”.  Just call out and he’ll bring you as much warm, freshly cooked foul as you can fit into your container.

When Egyptians make foul at home, they use a long-necked, tapered container called a “damasa” (that’s why this foul is called foul medammes).  Supposedly this long neck is necessary to provide for the proper slow cooking of the beans.  I never had one of these kitchen items, so I always stayed away from making my own homemade foul until I recently found a recipe that had an easy work around.  So I thought I’d share the vegan version with all of you here on Alf Hana.

Serves 2-4 people

  • 1 cup dried fava beans
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1/4 cup red lentils

1.  Wash beans and pick out any dirt or stones.  Cover with the water.  Leave to soak overnight.

Left: bean soaked overnight, Right: dried bean

2.  Put both the beans AND THEIR SOAKING WATER in a heavy pot that has a tight-fitting lid.  (Yes, you read that right.  Do not discard the soaking water.  Use it for cooking.)
3.  Add lentils.

4.  Cover tightly and cook on very low heat for 3 hours.
5.  Check beans every hour or so and add water if they look dry.  (I added about 1 cup after about 1 and a half hours.)
6.  Try not to stir the beans while they cook.  The beans are ready when they are soft and easily crushed with a spoon.


Cooked foul, before seasoning

I like to mash mine with a fork as I season it.

Typical way to eat foul. This technique is known as the 'rabbit's ear' because the way you scoop up the beans with the bread looks like the shape of the rabbit's ear.

Our foul feast!

Nutrition Information (for 1 of 4 servings, unseasoned foul):

Calories: 170; Fat: 0g (for unseasoned foul); Cholesterol: 0g; Carbohydrates: 29g; Fiber: 13g; Protein: 13g

Serving Suggestions and Variations:

Here’s with things get creative!  To serve, use any combination of spice you like.

  • Here are some traditional spices Egyptians use:  salt, cumin, garlic, lemon, onions, oil, hot red pepper, parsley, tomatoes
  • I usually like to have mine (about 1 cup of beans) with salt (about 1/2 a teaspoon), cumin (about 1/4 teaspoon), lemon (about 1/2 a teaspoon), and oil (about 1 – 2 teaspoons).  I usually keep the onions and tomatoes separate so I can munch on them after every few bites.  Of course, foul wouldn’t be foul without baladi bread (much like pita bread).
  • Some Egyptians like to purée the foul in the food processor before serving.
  • Most Egyptians would not serve the foul seasoned.  They’d leave you to make it the way you like it!
  • Alexandrian foul is famous for its mix of tahina, parsley and oil.
  • Sometimes I like to have foul with oil and tomato paste or pureed tomatoes – yummy!
  • Try different kinds of oils (olive, corn, etc.) and see which you like best.

Alf Hana!!!