For thousands of years, Arabs have consumed the same types of food including fruits (citrus fruits, dates, and figs) and a variety of nuts (almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, pistachios, and walnuts) that have led to a plethora of different cakes, sweets and desserts. All these, surprisingly healthy, yet indulgent ingredients are still prominent in traditional Arabic cooking today.
The nature of Arabic food is often not as distinctive to non- Arabs who don’t always have a clear understanding of the various regions and where certain dishes originate from. With such a huge cross over between regions, local delicacies have made some delicious cross overs to create dozens of variations of the same traditional dishes.
AboutHer.com did some serious indulging and have discovered 5 Saudi Arabian delicacies that are full of flavour and are deemed to be wondrous gastronomic experiences.
Ma’amoul are the crumbliest, butteriest, cookies filled with pistachios, walnuts, almonds, or dates. They’re made using a wooden mold to create perfect patterns and shapes and are perfumed with cardamom and cinnamon inside.
Often served at celebrations in Saudi Arabia and all across the Middle East and filled with traditional date pudding, these biscuits are a simple luxury that melt in the mouth.
Have you ever eaten a bite sized, hot crispy, dumpling drizzled in honey? Well you will when you try Luqaimat.
It’s a deep fried, yet surprisingly light, flour dumpling, which can kind of be likened to a donut, that isn’t sweet but begs to be bathed in date syrup, or honey, for a phenomenal taste sensation; Luqaimat, are customarily made in the month of Ramadan and enjoyed after Iftar.
Kunafa is like the Saudi Arabian version of a cheese Danish – hear us out; It’s base is a mild stretchy white cheese, quite like Mozzarella, topped off with a rich semolina pastry, soaked to the core in a sweet rose water syrup.
The sweet-dish is baked in a pie dish and cut into pieces for serving. It is a dessert connoisseur’s heaven.
According to a famous legend, muhallebi was introduced into Arab cuisine in the late 7th century by a Persian cook who served it to an Arab general by the name of Al-Muhallab Bin Abi Sufra.
He loved it so much, he named it after himself!
Similar to the consistency of Panna cotta, the thickened milk pudding is flavoured abundantly with vanilla, orange or rose water, and topped with pomegranate syrup, desiccated coconut or chopped nuts. Its parfait!
This baked, semolina based, curd soaked, rose flavoured syrup drenched cake sprinkled with coconut bears the taste of all things associated with Saudi Arabia.
The rich, yet fragrant flavours make for a perfect after dinner treat and the luxurious dessert has a delightfully light texture.