Cowpea Beans With Tomatoes

Cowpea Beans With Tomatoes |

Have I told you before that I’m a teacher? After a long summer holiday, the school finally started yesterday. Although this is my sixth year in this job, I still get as excited as students. I couldn’t sleep well the night beforet as I had series of dreams about my new students. I got up very early, took a shower and had a quick breakfast. I was so curious about my students, so I coulnd’t help thinking continually about them. Would they be passionate enough to learn? Would they be too silent, expecting me to talk the whole class hour? What would they think about me? All these questions were attacking my mind. Although the class started at 9:30, I went to school an hour ago to get motivated and overcome my excitement. Believe or not, I couldn’t get rid of this feeling until I entered the classroom. It was like a feeling of an actress or a singer just before they go on the stage! When you take the first step on the stage (classroom in my case), all questions and negative thoughts go away leaving their place to a wonderful feeling of enjoyment! I understood that I missed those curious looks from a crowd of students. Happily, we had great time and enjoyed the lesson together on this first day. Hope it goes on in the same way until the end of the term.


After school I went to bazaar (farmer’s market) and bought some fresh vegetables from there. It was so crowded as we’re close to winter and we know that in winter it’s hard to see vegetables as fresh and delicious as the ones in Summer and Fall. People were buying more than they usually do. Because of the crowd, I didn’t have much chance to compare the prices. In fact, I got so happy when I saw one of my favorite summer vegetables there that I wanted to do the shopping quickly to go home and cook this tasty ‘green bean like’ vegetable for dinner. I knew that this was the last time to see it at the market before winter. As I wanted to share it with you, I couldn’t pass up this chance!

It is called ‘borulce’ in Turkish. When I look up to dictionary, it says ‘cowpea beans’ for its English meaning. I’m not sure if it’s grown in any other countries. However, when I made a quick search, I saw that there are dishes around the world with its dried version, called black-eyed pea (a very cute name!). We also make dishes from it in Winter, but as we have the chance of buying it fresh in Summer, we use it in different ways. Borulce is a common vegetable of Aegean and Mediterranean regions of Turkey. People in other regions generally learn it from their friends or relatives in these two regions. I’m originally from The South of Turkey (Mediterranean region), but now I’m living in Central Anatolia, where people are not familiar with this tasty vegetable. They may think that it has the same flavor with usual green beans, but they are totally different. Although it’s a member of bean family, it has a more outstanding flavor. Unlike green beans, borulce is thin and has a cylinder shape with and acidulous flavor, which makes it an appealing savory food accompanying Turkish raki. I must also say that although people may add meat in a dish of green beans, it’s never put in a cowpea bean dish.

There are several ways to cook it, but I wanted to share the most common way in Mediterranean region. Agean region has some different versions and I’m going to tell about them in its next season.

Domatesli Borulce

–    1/2kg  cowpea beans
–    4 medium sized tomatoes, diced
–    1 onion, diced
–    3 tbsp olive oil
–    Salt to taste

Clean and wash the cowpea beans. Chop them as small as a half finger. If there are any tough ones, use just their seeds. You see those seeds in my dish in the picture.

Saute the onion in a pot. Add the cowpea beans and stir. Cook it until the beans change their color, about 5 minutes. Then add tomatoes and salt. Stir it once and cover it. Cook it on medium heat for about 30 minutes until the beans get soft enough.

Serve it either warm as the main dish or cold as a savory food.

Cowpea Beans With Tomatoes |


  1. says

    I never knew you were a teacher, we need more passionate teachers like you in the states :) the cowpea beans with tomatoes look delish!

  2. says

    This looks great. I love anything with green beans in it. I’m notorious for picking out the beans in certain dishes and saving them for last or that’s the only thing I pick out if it’s served somewhere. This reminds me of a similar dish in the Philippines.

  3. says

    I am always looking for new ways to prepare beans. I’ve never had beans and string beans. This looks very tasty!! Have a great year of teaching!

  4. says

    I had no idea you were a teacher! :) I love green beans too, they’re so crisp and bright. They look delicious in your recipe. I’ve never heard of cowpea beans, I wonder if they’re similar to cannellini beans?

  5. says

    Jessie- Thank you! I think teaching and learning have an interaction, teachers also learn a lot from students. And it’s great to know there are people who want to learn something from you.

    Jenn- You can keep all of this dish for the last :)

    Sophie- It’s so easy as you say, that’s another reason for me to cook it often.

    Reeni- There are several versions of several types of beans in our cuisine. I’ll try to share as many as I can. And thank you for your good wish.

    Natasha- Actually, I’ve never taught cooking classes. There must be a misunderstanding. I’m teaching English to university students.

    Faith- Never heard the name, cannellini beans, but when I searched it, I saw its pictures and I don’t think they are the same with the beans I used in this dish. Cannellini beans are more like the regular green beans we have here. I gave its link in the text above.

  6. OysterCulture says

    Wow, another great dish that I cannot wait to try. I just made a big batch of beans last night and now wish I had your recipe to try.

  7. says

    I love it when I can get fresh beans at the farmers’ market. Your beans look great with the tomatoes! Hope you have a great new school year.

  8. says

    i like green beans , in Morocco we love green beans with lamb meat
    so you are a teacher and what do you teach? your students are lucky to have a nice teacher like you
    good night

  9. says

    I know that feeling of the first day but I thought teachers dreaded it.It is good that u love ur job and u have that passion about it . That is hard to find these days.As usual this dish is a hit and being vegan it is a double hit. I can get these beans here so I will be making this soon.I have some egg plants for this weekend to try the first recipe from ur blog that I saw with egg plants will tell u how it goes.

  10. Soma says

    This is the best thing about your recipes, simplicity & flavor:-)

    I just did a review of a Turkish Restaurant which we frequent, & it claims to be food from Anatolia.. don’t know if they serve authentic versions, but whatever it is – it tastes delicious. We go there so often, & every time come back wanting to go back again:-D

  11. says

    This is the best thing about your recipes, simplicity & flavor:-)

    I just did a review of a Turkish Restaurant which we frequent, & it claims to be food from Anatolia.. don’t know if they serve authentic versions, but whatever it is – it tastes delicious. We go there so often, & every time come back wanting to go back again:-D

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