Jeddah festival celebrates coffee, chocolate

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Caffeine Festival in Jeddah. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
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Caffeine Festival in Jeddah. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
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Caffeine Festival in Jeddah. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
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Caffeine Festival in Jeddah. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
Updated 25 April 2017
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Jeddah festival celebrates coffee, chocolate

JEDDAH: On Saturday, Jeddah held its own coffee and chocolate festival at Emaar square, wrapping up two days of caffeine-fueled fun.
Unlike other coffee and chocolate festivals around the world, the event focused on Arabian coffee, desserts and food.
Saudi coffee culture was celebrated as visitors were offered the chance to taste blends of Arabic coffee, including blends from Damascus, Ramallah, Riyadh and Amman.
One type of Saudi Arabian coffee at the event was almond coffee -one of the most popular traditional hot drinks served in the Hijaz region during the cooler months. It contains milk, almond, rice flour and cardamom.
“We tried to make it unique yet traditional by adding extra new toppings instead of only serving grained almonds,” one exhibitor told Arab News.
“Oreo, lotus, cookies, pistachio and hazelnut” were added to the coffee to entice customers.
The event also featured Saudi folklore and dancing along with traditional songs and children’s activities.
If coffee is not to your liking, the event also boasts various types of chocolate.
Asmaa Dubaie, 41, is showing off her inventive approach toward chocolate.
“I mixed new flavors into the chocolate as a hot drink, such as cardamom and flowers added to all types of chocolate – white, dark and milk chocolate,” she told Arab News.

MORE PHOTOS: Caffeine Festival Gallery

Dubaie said she was trying to keep everything organic by creating “chocolate free of hydrogenated oils.”
Chocolate and coffee lovers braved the hot weather to enjoy the outdoor festival which featured more than 70 vendors and exhibitors.
“Coffee is a passion and part of Saudi tradition,” one of the ladies attending the festival told Arab News.
“Having such an event changes how Saudi Arabia is viewed by people around the world. We can have fun in Saudi Arabia,” another attendee commented.
Arwa Tallal Azhari, the CEO of the event and the founder of the Across Culture association told Arab News: “We called the event ‘Caffeine’ due to the caffeine included in coffee and cacao and tea. We gathered the startup businesses related to the theme, but not specializing in coffee or even espresso.”
The event is supported by the General Entertainment Authority, brought to you by Mix FM, Sky for Lighting and Careem, Azhari added.
The event begins at 5 p.m. and lasts until 11 p.m.


Ta’ateemah: Giving Eid a Hijazi flavor

Ta’ateemah includes a variety of dishes such as dibyazah, red mish, chicken and lamb stew and bread. File/Getty Images
Updated 19 June 2018
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Ta’ateemah: Giving Eid a Hijazi flavor

  • Dibyaza is made of melted dried apricots, roasted nuts, figs, peach and sugary dates to create a marmalade-like dish that can be enjoyed with or without bread
  • The dibyaza is also similar to an Egyptian dish called khoshaf, but dibyaza is often partnered with shureik — a donut-shaped bread with sesame sprinkled all over it

JEDDAH: Ta’ateemah is the name of the breakfast feast Hijazis enjoy on the first day of Eid Al-Fitr. It is derived from the Arabic word, itmah, or darkness, because the dishes served are light, just like midnight snacks.

Muslims around the world celebrate Eid Al-Fitr to feast after fasting for the holy month of Ramadan. But it is called Al-Fitr from iftar, or breakfast when translated to English, which is a meal Muslims do not get to experience during that month.
The first day of Eid is a day where they finally can, and they greet the day with joy by heading to Eid prayers and then enjoying this traditional meal.
Amal Turkistani, mother of five from Makkah who now lives in Jeddah, told Arab News all about a special Eid dish.
“The most famous dish is the dibyaza, and making a dish of it is a work of art that I can proudly say I excel at. Dibyaza is made of melted dried apricots, roasted nuts, figs, peach and sugary dates to create a marmalade-like dish that can be enjoyed with or without bread.”
She revealed that dibyaza is not a quick meal — it is usually prepared a day or two before Eid with the ingredients simmered to reach the correct liquid thickness.
No one can trace the origins of dibyaza — it remains a mystery. Some people claim it originated in Turkey, while others attribute it to the Indians.
A number of women who are famous for their dibyaza agreed that it is a Makkawi dish. This marmalade dish was developed and improved, with tiny details to distinguish it.
The dibyaza is also similar to an Egyptian dish called khoshaf, but dibyaza is often partnered with shureik — a donut-shaped bread with sesame sprinkled all over it.
Turkistani said sweet shops sell 1 kg of dibyaza for SR50 ($13), competing with housewives who make their own.

 

“I think it is always tastier when it’s homemade because of all the love that goes into making it. It’s also a wonderful way to greet your family and neighbors with this special dish that you only enjoy once a year.”
Her younger sister, Fatin, said: “My siblings always have Eid breakfast at my place, so it’s up to me to prepare the feast. My sister spares me the exhausting dibyaza-making, so I prepare two main dishes: Minazalla, which is a stew of lamb chops with tahini and a tomato chicken stew.
“She also serves what we call nawashif, or dry food, like different types of cheese and olives, pickled lemon, labneh, red mish — a mixture of white cheese, yogurt and chili pepper and halwa tahini,” Amal said.
Mohammed Ibrahim, 23, from Makkah, told Arab News: “It always feels unique to have minazalla and nawashif during Eid, and not just because it is followed by the Eidiyah.”

Decoder

What is Eidiyah?

It is money elders in the family give to the youth to celebrate Eid and to congratulate them on completing Ramadan fasting.