Arab Cuisines, Arab Foods and Arab Recipes
Arab Cuisine Culture
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Essential to any cooking in the Arabian Peninsula is the concept of hospitality. Meals are generally large family affairs, with much sharing and a great deal of warmth over the dinner table. Formal dinners and celebrations generally entail large quantities of lamb, and every occasion entails large quantities of Arabic coffee.
In an average Arab Gulf state household, a visitor might expect a dinner consisting of a very large platter, shared commonly, with a vast mountain of rice, incorporating lamb or chicken, or both, as separate dishes, with various stewed vegetables, heavily spiced, sometimes with a tomato sauce. Most likely, there would be several other items on the side, less hearty. Tea would certainly accompany the meal, as it is almost constantly consumed. Coffee would be included as well.
There are many regional differences in Arab cuisine. For instance, mujadara in Syria or Lebanon is different from mujadara in Jordan or Palestine. Some dishes, such as mensaf (the national dish of Jordan), are native to certain countries and rarely if ever make an appearance in other countries.
Unlike in most Western cuisines, cinnamon is used in meat dishes as well as in sweets such as baklava. Other desserts include variations of rice pudding and fried dough. Ground nut mixtures are common fillings for such treats. Saffron is used in everything, from sweets, to rice, to beverages. Fruit juices are quite popular in this often arid region.
The attention of a traveller, should be particularly turned, in the first place, to the various works of Nature, to mark the distinctions of the climates he may explore, and to offer such useful observations on the different productions as may occur. William Bartram
Reminds me of my safari in Africa. Somebody forgot the corkscrew and for several days we had to live on nothing but food and water. W. C. Fields