Tuesday,24 October, 2017
Current issue | Issue 1239, (26 March - 1 April 2015)
Tuesday,24 October, 2017
Issue 1239, (26 March - 1 April 2015)

Ahram Weekly

Eat like an Egyptian

Let’s talk about better living! Our new interactive family corner aims to expand our lifestyle horizons with practical little pearls of wisdom from the editor and input from our readers.

 

 

 

 

 

When it comes to food, Egyptians know their way around. And though we always make fun of how fattening our traditional cuisine is, not all our classic dishes are unhealthy. In fact, some are actually brilliant for digestion and overall health. Egypt’s cuisine might not be as diversified as that of other Middle Eastern countries, but it represents a mixture of all the different civilisations that have come to Egypt. You can taste many cultures in one simple and tasty plate. Here are some of the most delicious and popular Egyptian dishes:

Hamam mahshi (stuffed pigeon): This is pigeon stuffed with rice or fereek (green wheat) and then roasted and is one of Egypt’s best-loved dishes. The pigeon has a different taste than chicken, and the meat is a little darker. It is full of flavour and the stuffing is delectable.

Ta’meyya: This delicious, vegetarian-friendly food was originated in Egypt and then spread to other Middle Eastern countries where it is known as falafel. It’s an Egyptian version of snack food. It consists of crushed broad beans mixed with lots of spices and herbs and then shaped into a miniature doughnut and deep fried until it is nice and crunchy. Ta’meyya is usually served in a sandwich with lots of vegetables and tahini sauce.
 
Foul medammes: Also simply called foul, this is one of Egypt’s favourite, cheapest and most popular quick eats. It consists of slow-cooked fava beans seasoned with salt, garlic, chopped parsley, lemon, olive oil, black pepper and cumin. It can also be served with butter, tomato sauce, tahini, fried or boiled eggs and pastrami. Foul is usually eaten at breakfast with bread (aish baladi).

Koshari: A mixture of lentils, rice and pasta, among other items, including tomato sauce, caramelised onions, garlic and chickpeas, koshari is considered to be a national dish. It contains four sources of carbohydrates and is a popular lunch item.

Fatta: This consists of layers of rice and fried bread covered in a garlic and vinegar meat soup with large chunks of stewed beef on top. Fatta is a really fattening dish, with an extremely high calorific value.

Moloukhiya: This is a green soup served with aish baladi or rice. This is one of the most popular dishes in Egyptian cuisine. It is prepared by finely chopping moloukhiya leaves, adding garlic and coriander for a characteristic aromatic taste, and then cooking it in a meat stock such as chicken, beef or rabbit. In coastal cities such as Alexandria and Port Said, fish or shrimp are used as a base for the broth.

Rokak: This is a traditional dish eaten on Eid Al-Adha in Egypt. It consists of sheets of dough that are usually a little thicker than filo dough sheets, which are dipped in broth before being spread out in a baking pan filled with cooked ground beef and then put into the oven until golden and crisp.

Keshk: This is a milk or yogurt savory pudding made with flour and sometimes seasoned with fried onions, chicken broth or boiled chicken.

Kebda Iskandarani (Alexandria liver): This consists of fried liver seasoned to be rather spicier than usual.

Rozz me’ammar: On festive occasions and at large family meals, instead of cooking plain white rice, Egyptians often make rice with milk, butter or cream and bake it in the oven in a special kind of casserole called a bram.
 
Feseekh: This is a traditional Egyptian dish of Pharaonic origin served only during the Sham Al-Nessim Festival. It consists of fermented, salted and dried grey mullet fish. It is usually served with aish baladi, diced onions and lots of lemon.

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