There are different recipes for this rice and beans dish and the difference basically depends on one's tastes and preferences. Some would add a tablespoon of tomato paste or fresh chopped tomatoes. Some serve it with fried eggs (sunny side up) and some people prefer it hot. It may also be served with lamb shanks. The following recipe is how I like to make and serve dami baghali in our home, simple with no meat and with caramelized onions on top. I also like to use equal portions of rice and fava beans. However, it is more common to use anywhere from 1/2 cup to two cups more rice than fava beans. Instead of increasing the amount of rice you may reduce the fava beans to 1 1/2 cups in this recipe if you like.
1 1/2 cups dried yellow skinless fava beans
2 cups white long grain rice
2 large yellow onions, one onion diced finely, one sliced thinly
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
A pinch of red pepper (optional)
Salt to taste
Vegetable oil or olive oil
- Rinse and soak the beans in 4 cups of cool water for a couple of hours. Drain.
- Rinse the rice with cool water and soak in 4 cups of water with 2 tablespoons of salt for about an hour before cooking. Drain.
- Heat about 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large heavy bottom pot over medium heat. Add the chopped onions, saute until lightly golden brown. Add turmeric, stir well. Add the beans, cumin and red pepper. Cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Stirring intermittently.
- Add the rice to the pot and pour enough water to cover the rice and the beans about an inch above the rice. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat. Cover the lid with a clean kitchen towel to absorb the moisture. Cover the pot and cook for about 45-50 minutes on low heat.
- In the meantime saute the remaining sliced onions in 3 tablespoons of olive oil. When the onions become soft and transparent, reduce the heat to low and let them caramelize slowly.
It would be nice to have love reciprocated
one sided love is trouble
if Majnun's heart was filled with maddening love
Layli's heart was brimming with more intense love
~Poem by: Baba Taher