Typical Dish

Al-Isma'iliyah, Ismailia, Egypt

Al-Isma'iliyah is a city located in the northeastern part of Egypt, near the Suez Canal, and is the capital of the Ismailia Governorate. The city has a population of approximately 370,000 people, and it is known for its beautiful scenery, as it is located on the banks of Lake Timsah, which is a popular tourist destination. The city was named after Khedive Ismail, who founded the city in 1863 as a base for the construction of the Suez Canal.

The people of Al-Isma'iliyah lead a relatively laid-back lifestyle, with many residents enjoying spending time outdoors, particularly on the lakefront. The city has a few bustling areas, particularly near the main square and marketplaces, where vendors sell a wide variety of goods, including food and drinks.

One of the most popular dishes in Al-Isma'iliyah is Kushari, a vegetarian dish made with rice, lentils, chickpeas, pasta, and a spicy tomato sauce. This hearty dish is typically served in large portions and is a staple of the Egyptian diet. Another popular dish is Mulukhiyah, which is made from finely chopped green leaves of the jute plant, cooked with chicken or rabbit meat and served with rice. The dish is known for its slimy texture, and it is said to be an acquired taste.

In addition to these dishes, Al-Isma'iliyah is also known for its street food, which is particularly popular among locals and tourists alike. One popular street food is Ta'amiya, a type of falafel made with fava beans and spices. It is typically served with bread and tahini sauce. Another popular street food is Shawarma, which is made with thinly sliced meat that is cooked on a vertical spit and served with vegetables and a variety of sauces, including tahini, garlic, and chili.

Al-Isma'iliyah is also known for its sweet treats, including Baklava, a pastry made with layers of phyllo dough filled with chopped nuts and sweetened with syrup or honey. Another popular sweet is Basbousa, a semolina cake that is soaked in syrup and often flavored with coconut or almond.

In terms of beverages, tea and coffee are popular choices in Al-Isma'iliyah. Egyptian tea is typically served black and is often flavored with mint or cinnamon. Coffee is typically served strong and black, and it is often enjoyed with a sweet treat, such as Baklava or Basbousa. Another popular drink is Karkadeh, a tea made from hibiscus flowers that is typically served hot or cold and is known for its bright red color.

Mealtimes in Al-Isma'iliyah typically follow the typical Egyptian schedule, with lunch being the main meal of the day and dinner being a lighter meal. Many locals enjoy a midday break and may take a nap or relax with friends and family before returning to work or other activities. Street food vendors are typically busiest during the evening hours, particularly on weekends, when locals may be out and about enjoying the city's nightlife.

Overall, Al-Isma'iliyah is a city with a rich culinary tradition, with a variety of dishes and beverages that are enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. Whether you're in the mood for a hearty plate of Kushari, a sweet pastry, or a refreshing glass of Karkadeh, there's something for everyone in this vibrant city.