Typical Dish

At-Ta'if, Mecca, Saudi Arabia

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At-Ta'if is a city located in the western part of Saudi Arabia, approximately 70 km east of the holy city of Mecca. The city has a population of around 1.2 million people and is one of the largest cities in the country. The city is situated at an altitude of 1,700 meters above sea level, which provides a pleasant climate, particularly during the hot summer months.

The people of At-Ta'if lead a relatively relaxed lifestyle, with a strong emphasis on family values and traditions. The city is known for its beautiful gardens, particularly the Al-Ruddaf Park and the Al-Shifa Park. These parks are popular destinations for families, who come to enjoy the beautiful scenery and peaceful atmosphere.

In terms of food, At-Ta'if is famous for its traditional Arabian cuisine, which is heavily influenced by the nomadic Bedouin culture. The cuisine is characterized by the use of fresh herbs and spices, particularly cumin, coriander, and turmeric. The food is typically prepared using a combination of grilling, baking, and roasting techniques, and is often served with rice or flatbread.

One of the most popular dishes in At-Ta'if is machboos, a rice dish that is similar to biryani. It is made by cooking basmati rice with meat (usually chicken or lamb) and a variety of spices, including cumin, coriander, cardamom, and cinnamon. The meat is typically marinated in a mixture of yogurt, garlic, ginger, and lemon juice before being added to the rice. The dish is garnished with fried onions and served with a side of salad.

Another popular dish in At-Ta'if is thareed, a savory bread pudding that is made by layering torn pieces of bread with meat and vegetables in a pot. The dish is then seasoned with a variety of spices, including cumin, coriander, and turmeric, and is typically cooked over low heat until the bread has absorbed the flavors of the meat and vegetables. Thareed is often served with a side of tomato and cucumber salad.

One of the most popular drinks in At-Ta'if is qahwa, a type of Arabian coffee that is typically served after meals or during social gatherings. The coffee is made by roasting and grinding whole coffee beans and then boiling them with water and cardamom. The resulting brew is strong and aromatic, with a slightly bitter taste. Qahwa is often served with dates or other sweet treats.

In addition to qahwa, At-Ta'if is also known for its fruit juices, particularly pomegranate juice. Pomegranate juice is made by blending fresh pomegranate seeds with water and sugar, and is often served chilled. It is a refreshing and healthy alternative to soda or other sugary drinks.

In terms of meal times, the people of At-Ta'if typically eat three main meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Breakfast is usually a light meal consisting of bread, cheese, and olives, along with coffee or tea. Lunch is the main meal of the day and is often a social affair, with family members and friends gathering together to share a meal. Dinner is typically a lighter meal, consisting of soup or a small dish such as hummus or falafel.