Fasolia (Green Bean Stew)

A delicious stew made with fresh green beans and tomatoes. An easy and quick recipe for a hearty healthy everyday meal.

Yakhni Fasolia, is a warm comfort Palestinian dish that I grew up eating during the summer where fasolia is grown and freshly picked. The dish is cooked with either lamb or beef mixed in fresh tomato juice and served with Vermicelli rice. However, this recipe is hearty enough to serve on its own and/or can easily turn into a vegan dish.

This dish is one of the easiest dishes that one can prepare, especially if you have a pressure cooker.

Palestinian cuisine is full of numerous stews. Stews consist of different kinds of vegetables mixed with meat. The Arabic word for a stew is yakhni. Stew is a dish that consists of meat and vegetables cooked slowly in liquid in a closed dish or pan. All yakhnis are often served with plain or vermicelli rice (ruz bil sh’iryeh). Check out my cauliflower stew, pea stew, and tomato stew.

Stews normally involve cooking the meat first and using the broth as a base for the stew liquid. The meat broth mixed with the vegetables and spices gives the dish that hearty flavorful taste which makes a difference from just eating steamed plain vegetables.

“Fasolia” is the Arabic word for “green beans” which is also the same name as this dish. Don’t confuse green beans with long string green beans or sometimes called chinses green beans. The latter is called loubiyah in Arabic and is usually cooked as a vegan dish with only tomatoes and olive oil.

The recipe is very simple, that includes only a few ingredients. I highly recommend using fresh beans and fresh tomatoes. The fresh ingredients in this recipe make a huge difference in the taste of this dish.

I love to use lamb chunks or lamb with a bone which gives the stew a richer taste. However, some prefer beef which can be also used.

The spices used with this dish are simple, just allspice and salt.

How to make this recipe in a pressure cooker:

Trim the ends of the green beans on both sides, cut each into about the size of your pinky, wash well, strain, and set aside.

Wash and rinse the meat, and add a pinch of cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and salt over the meat.

Heat oil in the pressure cooker pot, place meat, and sauté for 2-5 minutes until it’s brownish. (Sautéing and spicing the meat gives it an extra flavor before it’s cooked in water).

Take the meat out of the pot and set it aside, use whatever is left of the same oil to sauté onions, then add green beans (fasoulia). Sauté the beans with the onions for 2 minutes then bring the meat back to the pot. Pour in the fresh tomato juice with 2 cups of water, add salt and allspice, and mix everything well. Cover the pot and let it cook.  Once you hear either a whistle or the steam coming out of the pot, that’s an indication that the food is boiling, from that moment set the alarm for 30 minutes.

When time is up turn off the stove, and let the pressure cooker cool off -about 5-10 minutes before unsealing the pressure valve.

Here is how to make the recipe without a pressure cooker:

Same preparation for the meat as above.

Add 5 cups of water, cover and simmer for about 30 minutes (lamb takes much longer to cook if not cooked in a pressure cooker).

Meanwhile, trim the ends of the green beans on both sides, cut each into about the size of your pinky, wash well, strain, and set aside.

In a separate pot, sauté onions with oil until golden then add the beans. Cover and let the beans cook for about 15 minutes, stir every few minutes. The beans need to be halfway cooked before adding tomato sauce, you can test them with a fork to see if they’ve softened.

Take the meat and add it over the beans, pour in fresh tomato sauce, and 2 cups of the meat broth, salt, and allspice, stir well, once it starts boiling cover, lower the heat, cover the pot and let it simmer for another 30 minutes.

Serve hot with a side of rice.

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Fasolia (Green Bean Stew)

  • Author: Wafa Shami
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20-45 minutes
  • Total Time: 90 minutes
  • Category: Stews (Yakhni)
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: Palestinian/Middle Eastern

Description

A delicious stew made with fresh green beans and tomatoes. An easy and quick recipe for a hearty healthy everyday meal.

Yakhni Fasolia, is a warm comfort Palestinian dish that I grew up eating during the summer where fasolia is grown and freshly picked. The dish is cooked with either lamb or beef mixed in fresh tomato juice and served with Vermicelli rice. However, this recipe is hearty enough to serve on its own and/or can easily turn into a vegan dish.

 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1.5 pounds green beans
  • 1 pound meat beef or lamb
  • Juice of 45 medium size fresh and fully ripped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste (optional and if tomatoes are not in season)
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon allspice (adjust to taste)
  • Salt
  • A pinch of the following spices for the meat (nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and salt)

Instructions

  1. Trim the ends of the green beans on both sides, cut each into about the size of your pinky, wash well, strain, and set aside.
  2.  Wash and rinse the meat, and add a pinch of cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and salt over the meat.
  3. Heat oil in the pressure cooker pot, place meat, and sauté for 2-5 minutes until it’s brownish. (Sautéing and spicing the meat gives it an extra flavor before it’s cooked in water).
  4. Take the meat out of the pot and set it aside, use whatever is left of the same oil to sauté onions, then add green beans (fasoulia).
  5. Sauté the beans with the onions for 2 minutes then bring the meat back to the pot. Pour in the fresh tomato juice with 2 cups of water, add salt and allspice, and mix everything well. Cover the pot and let it cook.  
  6. Once you hear either a whistle or the steam coming out of the pot, that’s an indication that the food is boiling, from that moment set the alarm for 30 minutes.
  7. When time is up turn off the stove and let the pressure cooker cool off -about 5-10 minutes before unsealing the pressure valve. 
  8. Served hot with vermicelli rice.

Notes

  1. Same preparation for the meat as above.
  2. Add 5 cups of water, cover and simmer for about 30 minutes (lamb takes much longer to cook if not cooked in a pressure cooker). Meanwhile, trim the ends of the green beans on both sides, cut each into about the size of your pinky, wash well, strain, and set aside.
  3.  In a separate pot, sauté onions with oil until golden then add the beans. Cover and let the beans cook for about 15 minutes, stir every few minutes. The beans need to be halfway cooked before adding tomato sauce, you can test them with a fork to see if they’ve softened.
  4.  Take the meat and add it over the beans, pour in fresh tomato sauce, and 2 cups of the meat broth, salt, and allspice, stir well, once it starts boiling cover, lower the heat, cover the pot and let it simmer for another 30 minutes.
  5. Serve hot with a side of rice.

Keywords: Vegetables, meat, rice

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