Bigilla is a bean paste made from broad beans. We do get fresh broad beans in winter but I have never seen the dried version here. Since it was a recipe from Middle East, I called for these beans from Dubai. They looked pretty hard and I wondered how to go about. Frankly speaking I was very very hesitant , I had no clue about the taste and texture.

I soaked the beans overnight and was surprised to see them fluff up so well. The skin was very hard and I knew it would separate after cooking, so I peeled all the beans and then cooked them in a pressure cooker. One whistle and then simmered for about 15 minutes.they cooked very well. When I opened the cooker, I got a aroma which was similar to that of white peas that we cook for Ragda Pattice.
I blended it with garlic , chilly and lemon juice to a smooth paste. While checking the spices I wanted to lick it again and again ! and it was very different than the white peas.
 Beans after soaking

Beans after removing the skin

Makes : 2 cups
Recipe Source : Mixed sources


3 cups broad beans
1 tbsp garlic paste
1 green chilly, spicy one
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt to taste


Soak the beans overnight.
De skin and wash them in the morning.
Pressure cook with a pinch of salt.
Pressure cook for one whistle, then simmer for 10 minutes.
Let the pressure release, check if done.
At this point you could make this paste in two ways.

For the first option is

Mash the beans and add all the ingredients.
Serve warm.
This would be something like the Ful Medames .

The second option is ….

Put all ingredients into a blender and blend till a smooth paste is formed.
Drizzle olive oil and serve chilled.
I opted for the second version and at the first glance everyone thought it was Hummus.After tasting , they could make out that the taste was different, but with a similar texture. Bigilla tasted amazing and we all loved it, specially with the khubz and the accompaniments of tomatoes and cucumbers.
I had made only one vegetarian spinach omelet , which went off in tasting, so at dinner time I made some spinach fritters as a combo to this meal, which was on the spot kinds. I could not click pics as no one would have waited and anyway my photo shoot was over before dinner. But for sure I will make those fritters again and post.

The Bigilla was a part of the Iraqi Breakfast that I cooked for Buffet on  Table.

Bigilla , Bean Dip

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