18 March 2011 Dinner News – Yemen

18 Mar

Looking past the Demonstrations and Bloodshed


Even if not traveling to the city of Moka (also spelled Mocha) you are surely familiar with the drink of choice – coffee!  The coffee of Yemen is unlike anything you will find in Europe or the United States and has a wonderful history and lore.

Qishr – Ginger coffee, but an explanation of the steeped version can be found at the end of The land where coffee began…

Qahwa – Saffron and cardamon coffee.

The Meal

Here are some suggestions for soothing beverages and a wonderful meal to celebrate the culture of Yemen:


Naqe’e Al Zabib (Cold Raisin drink), and Diba’a (Squash nectar) are cited in Wikipedia, but recipes could be found on the internet… have you had these?  Please leave a comment and share these dishes.


Saltah – The national dish is made in 3 parts more by final taste than a strict recipe.

Lamb or Beef Stew
Zhug – hot sauce added to taste
Hubla – Green fenugreek paste added on top of the stew before serving.

The National Dish – Description of how a busy restaurant prepares the dish and recipe for their version.
How to eat Salta
– set of photos showing lunch at a restaurant in Yeman.

Hawayil –  Spice mix used in many dishes.

Yemen Fatah – Spicy lamb or beef dish served over couscous.

Lamb Thareed – Spicy chickpea based stew

Side Dish

Meals are often served with different kinds of flat bread such as Malooga and Laxoox which are used as an eating utensil.

Aseed – Dumpling in tamarind and tomato gravy with a warning to have strong helpers.

There are many other side dishes attributed to Yemen, but formal recipes are difficult to come by:

Fahsa,Samak Mofa, Fahsa, Fattah, Rashoosh, Osahra, Kudam, Fateer, and Khamira.


Bint-al-sahn – Honey Cake made with many layers stacked together and served with honey or butter.  Some recipes suggest spinach or meat filling for special occasions, but this explanation and picture describe the process clearly.

The View

Dar al-Hajr - The Rock Castle

There are several ancient sites and some modern adventures that can be toured from your computer to help learn about the culture and geography of this beautiful country:

World Heritage Sites – photo tours of Zabid, Sana’a and Shibam

Wadi Dhahr: Rock Palace

Surfing in Yemen

Road Trip Yemen: Bura’a and Back






The Chatter

Political unrest is common in this portion of Asia. Formerly Ottamans occupied the North and British claimed the South. The current Yemeni nation was formed in 1990 and brought an uneasy peace to the relationship between the tribes of Hashid and Bakeel.

The news today has been dominated by an ugly turn in demonstrations:

Yemen troops shoot protesters dead (
Yemeni Government Snipers Open Fire on Protesters, Killing Dozens (Fox News)
Protest security committee investigates alleged sniper, thug attacks (Yemin Times)



(200612_Yemen-212 photo is the work of Ai@ce while the Dar al-Hajr is the work of Island Spice and is used under Creative Commons License)

1 Comment

Posted by on 18 March 2011 in Yemen


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One response to “18 March 2011 Dinner News – Yemen

  1. Ann

    20 March 2011 at 17:52

    Nancy, this is great! Travel and food, two of my favorite things. Loved reading about Yemen. Whenever I hear about Yemen in the news it reminds me of the “Friends” episode when Chandler was trying to break up with Janice and he told her he had to move to Yemen for work. And she came to the airport to say goodbye to him and he actually had to board the plane.


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