While it may seem strange to eat beans for breakfast, in Morocco, a common and popular breakfast dish is made from just that.
Bessara is a deliciously addictive Moroccan fava bean dip, similar to hummus, which is served with bread (I prefer gluten-free toast!), or thinned out and eaten like a soup in the AM.
While that may sound crazy, it’s really not – with their high fiber and protein content, beans keep your blood sugar balanced, which means your energy levels will be consistently high throughout the day, and you won’t have the desire to constantly snack throughout the day.
No matter what time of the day you eat bessara, it provides a variety of benefits:
- Fava beans are high in fiber and contribute to healthy digestion. 1 cup provides 9 grams of fiber (36% recommended daily value).
- They also provide 10 grams of plant-based protein per cup.
- Fava beans provide iron, which is needed for energy.
- They are a good source of magnesium, which supports bone health, helps relieve muscle aches, and calms your nerves.
Here’s the recipe:
1 1/2 cups (about 8 oz. or 200 g) dried split fava beans, soaked overnight
2 cloves garlic, or to taste
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons (or more) reserved cooking liquid
1/2 teaspoon celtic or pink himalayan salt
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1) Drain the beans.
2) If you have a pressure cooker, add the beans to the pot, cover with 2 inches of water, and cook on high pressure for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let the pressure release naturally (about 10 minutes). If you don’t have a pressure cooker, add them to a regular pot and cover with 2-3 inches of water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium and simmer until tender, about 1 hour.
3) Reserve about 1 cup of the cooking liquid and set aside. Drain the rest of the beans, then add to a blender, along with all remaining ingredients (except garnish).
4) Blend on high, until a smooth and creamy consistency is formed. If you prefer a thinner consistency, you can add the reserved liquid to thin it out, 1 tablespoon as a time, as you like.
5) Taste and adjust any seasonings as you like.
6) You can serve right away, by pouring into a bowl and adding garnish, or you could also reheat in a small pan on the stove top, so that it is served warm. Traditionally it is served warm with bread.
Get the printable version of the recipe here.
Author: Maria Marlowe is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach who has helped thousands of people improve their health by optimizing their diet. She has created meal plans and programs to help you lose weight, clear up acne, and spend less time in the kitchen yet still eat healthy.
She has been featured in Vogue, The New York Times, NBC, Well + Good, and more. Her first book, The Real Food Grocery Guide (to be released May 2017), will teach you how to eat healthy without going broke.