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The Whole Foods Kosher kitchen

Moroccan Fava Bean Soup (Bessara) Recipe. Iced Variation

Posted on 6th of October, 2010 by Lévana

Moroccan Fava Bean Soup (Bessara) Recipe. Iced Variation

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A beloved Moroccan classic, called Bessara. This soup costs pennies, and tastes like a million bucks. I make it in summer too, and served it iced (see variation below). You might choose to serve this dish not as a soup but as a side dish. In this case, proceed just as instructed, using only 6-8 water

There is no substitute for these funky and incredibly flavorful beans. You will find them in Indian, Italian and Middle Eastern Grocery stores, or simply go online: well worth looking for. You will love them, so get a nice supply and store them in glass jars.

Don’t get it into your head to peel them, which would be pure slavery: Buy them peeled!


4 cups peeled dry fava beans

3 quarts (12 cups) water

1/2 cup olive oil

Salt to taste

8 large cloves garlic

2 tablespoons paprika

1 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste

2 tablespoons cumin

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice


Bring the beans, water, oil, salt and garlic to boil in a wide bottom pot. Reduce the flame to medium and cook, covered, for 2 hours. Whisk the paprika, cayenne, cumin, lemon juice and a little water in a bowl to make sure you have no spice lumps, and throw the mixture in the pot. Cook 15 more minutes. You will find that the beans have almost completely dissolved all by themselves, but just in case you want a more elegant presentation, cream the soup with an immersion blender. Adjust the texture and seasonings. Makes a dozen ample servings.

Variation: Cold fava bean soup: GF Stir in a 15-ounce can coconut milk in the chilled soup, and serve cold.

Filed under: Bessara Recipes, Fava Beans Recipes, Gluten Free Recipes, Kosher Recipes, Moroccan Recipes, Moroccan Soup Recipes, Pasta Recipes, Recipes, Soup Recipes, Vegetarian Recipes

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