MAKKAH — The daily income from a “foul pot” (jarrat al-foul) during the holy month of Ramadan exceeds SR800, which is twice the price of a barrel of oil priced approximately at SR400.
A pot of foul (cooked fava beans), which holds about a barrel of foul, brings just half of that during the rest of the year. This is primarily because many people prefer to break their fast with foul, which is considered to be one of the staples of the Ramadan table. Overcrowding, arguments and the occasional fisticuffs are common at outlets selling this food item just before sunset.
In Makkah, foul prepared by Amm Ghali using firewood is among the most favored, a name which has been embedded in the memories of Makkah residents for over three decades. Customers come to his shop in large numbers every day from near and far.
Ahmad, a foul seller, said, “Foul is a major dish on the breakfast table whether during Ramadan or the rest of the year. There is a very high demand during normal working days, but it rises during Ramadan, particularly before iftar. The majority of foul shops witness overcrowding by fasting customers, who consider their iftar meal incomplete without foul.”
Ahmad says people are astonished that the income from a “foul pot” reaches SR800. “It might be slightly higher depending on the size of the shop and its fame,” Ahmad added.