Exploring 10 amazing famous Middle East dishes

Look at the dishes that represent Middle Eastern countries with recipes and interesting historical meanings.

Madfun - Saudi Arabia


Hospitality is very important for Muslims. Arabs will serve meat to the guests, especially lamb and goat. The Bedouin (nomadic Arabia) can bake camel meat. Local people often buy live animals at the market and take them to the slaughterhouse or kill themselves at home. Next, they will marinate the meat in a mixture of spices, rose water and saffron. Traditionally, the meat will be wrapped in a wet straw mat and buried in slow-roasted ash.

Camel hump - the United Arab Emirates (UAE)


Camels are very special to Arabs. Resilient animals can be burdened and survived through long walks through the desert, helping residents develop economically and commercially. Camel meat is highly valued in the Middle East, especially the camel hump which is delicious, soft and without fat.

Shish kebabs – Turkey


According to the Turkish cookbook written by Nevin Halici, grilled meat (kebab) was first written in the Turkish dictionary from the eleventh century. It can be assumed that the Ottoman Empire (the ancient Turkish state) has spread barbecue throughout the Middle East and many countries in the world. Grilled meat is a dish that represents Turkish cuisine. Some of the best barbecue dishes in the world come from the southern provinces of this country.

Khobz – Lebanon


Bread has a sacred place in Islamic culture and will be considered a sin if wasted. Wheat was planted about 12,000 years ago in Fertile Crescent (the Fertile Crescent region extending from today's Iraq to the Sinai Peninsula). The first bread in Lebanon is called saj (toasted on hot plates) and tannur (toasted on traditional ovens). Pita bread came into being with the development of the old oven.

B'stilla – Pastilla Pigeon Pie Morocco Food


The khalip (king of Islam) of the Abbasid Caliphate (third Arabian dynasty of Arabs) loved the recipes of Persian chefs. With that formula, they create a subtle combination of sweet and salty. B'stilla, the Maroc pigeon pie, is the last example of how that combination works. Cake made of super thin layers of pastry wrapped pigeon, scrambled eggs and grilled almonds. B'stilla is decorated with cinnamon, sugar powder and served at celebrations.

Mansaf – Jordan


Popular with the Jordanians and the Palestinians, mansaf is a combination of two main items of the Islamic world, rice and bread. Lamb is cooked in fermented yoghurt from jameed and eaten with rice or bulgur. Traditionally, diners eat mansaf in a large plate. Mansaf is Jordan's national dish and can also be found in Palestine, Iraq, South Syria and Saudi Arabia.

Tharid – Bahrain


As the favorite dish of the Prophet Mohammad, tharid is made of a thick layer of crisp bread with casseroles and vegetables. In the month of Ramadan, families gather at sunset with a meal called iftar in Arabic. Every Middle Eastern country has typical Ramadan. Tharid is a dish for iftar in Bahrain, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.

Kabab karaz – Syria


The first Arabic cookbook, Kitab al-Tabikh was written in the tenth century by Abu Muhammad ibn Sayyar for the prince of Aleppo, the city considered the food capital of the Middle East. This cherry tomato meatball is the delicious dish of Aleppo. Taste the attractive dishes with fresh cherry picked in the short season, early June.

Rangina – Qatar


Long before the oil brought wealth, the palm was the main ingredient of the Arabian Gulf, both in terms of food and commerce. The palm is used to make palm sugar. In addition, there is a candy named “fudge” combining palm fruit with walnuts and melted halva on the soft dough. Then, the candy is decorated with colorful pistachios and almonds.

Bastani – Iran


The Persians are famous for making the world's first ice cream by pouring grape juice or syrup on ice that they keep in an underground room. Bastani is a cream made from milk, eggs, sugar, rose water, saffron, vanilla and pistachio. At times, the bastani ingredient also contains the salep, the most expensive spice in the world.

By: Stephan Swift

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