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Fetteh: the Cousin of Hummus (plus recipe)

Fetteh, a warm dish of thick yogurt with soft chickpeas, is a delicacy you ought to try. If there are any good Lebanese restaurants near you, that’s a good place to start looking. If not – make it yourself.

 The concept of Fetteh (or “fata”, depending on who you ask) may sound strange to you at first. Basically, it’s a combination of soft cooked chickpeas (like the ones used for hummus and msabbha), with yogurt and toasted pita bread.

Azzam Fateh Berlin

Doesn’t sound very promising unless you’re a yogurt fan. Israeli friends of mine who I told about this dish were somewhat reluctant, and I guess anyone who ever tasted tahini is bound to ask: why?

Well, I too had my doubts but I had to try. About a month ago, during a a trip to Berlin, I went to Azzam. That’s a Lebanese-Syrian place, in the south of Berlin (in Sonnenalle, near Hermannplatz U-Bahn station), which serves real hummus, msabbha, ful, shawarma, and other traditional middle-eastern goodies. One of which is Fata (that’s how they spell it).

It was absolutely superb, and I hated the idea of waiting for my next vacation to taste it again, so I took Mercedece’s fetteh recipe, made some adjustments and experimented a lot, until I finally been able to replicate Azzam’s fata. Sort of.

You should try to – it’s easy to make, it’s healthy, it’s a great solution for friends and family members who are allergic to sesame, and above all: it tastes wonderful.

Fata/Fetteh Recipe
[for two plates]
1/2 cup small dried chickpeas
150 pita bread (see explanation bellow)
1 garlic clove
1/2 lemon
2 cups of yogurt (preferably of sheep/goat milk)
1/4 cup pine nuts – or –
1/2 cup cashew
olive oil, salt, cumin

Soak chickpeas for at least 12 hours, in a large bowl with tap water. Switch the water at list once during that time.
2. Wash thoroughly and cook until soft (about 1/2 hour in a pressure cooker or 1-1.5 hour in a regular pot, with 1/2 tsp baking soda).
3. Toast the pitas until it fully crisps – if they are very flat it should be easy. If they are a bit thicker, cut every pita into two “circles” and go over it with a rolling pin until it’s 2-3mm thin.
4. Roast the cashew/pine nuts in a pan.
5. Lightly warm the yogurt – be careful, because if heated too long it could loose it’s consistency.
6. Filter and split the chickpeas into two small bowls, while still hot. Break the pitas into small pieces (but not too small) and mix with the chickpeas. Add some salt and cumin.
7. Poor the yogurt into the bawls, add the pinenuts/cashew and a little lemon juice and olive oil. Eat while still warm.

12 Comments on Fetteh: the Cousin of Hummus (plus recipe)

  1. Very good recipe
    highly recommended
    i love chickpeas

  2. oh my god this sounds delicious!…im pretty keen to try it for breakfast but my flatmates might think im slightly odd…wouldn’t be the first time haha chickpeas get quite a strange reception in nz

  3. i like fatteh for breakfast.
    so tasty.
    it’s 10am in sydney right now and i want fatteh!!!

  4. 150 pitas? Is that 150 gr?

  5. What is garlic for?

  6. Does there hapen to be a recipe for ppl who are allergic to chickpeas? 🙁

  7. fatta is one of my favorite breakfast…but i recommend if u toast the bread before using it …and u don’t have to split the cooked chick peas just cook them to perfection (soft), and for the topping u could toast the pinenuts in melted butter and spread them on top of the yogurt …it tastes yuuuummmmyyyy 🙂

  8. For the Berliners… If you like the Fateh at Azam’s you must go across the street to Akrum Snack – it’s a small yellow place that serves both Mussabeha and Fateh. I personally think both of these dishes are much superior to those made at Azam’s.

  9. The first thing I thought of when looking at this recipe was “mmmm, breakfast!”. However, I am thinking of it sweet instead of savory….I like the cashews, but maybe add some homemade preserves like cherry and a dollop of butter, and leave out the garlic, olive oil and cumin?…Hm….

  10. There are many variations of fatteh; I’ve never seen this particular one. I suggest you try to mix some tahini with the yogurt, use pine nuts instead of cashews, and add some melted butter (or ghee if available). See this video: It’s in Arabic, but it should be easy to see what’s going on.

    As far as I know, what I’m describing above is the most common variation of chickpea fatteh in Syria and Lebanon.

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