Ramadan Traditions in Makkah: Arabic Coffee and Dates (and my special coffee recipe)

Whenever guests arrrive at a Meccan house, they are greeted with (قهوة عربية و تمر) Arabic coffee and dates. There are many different varieties of dates available in Saudi Arabia and everyone has their favorite. Arabic coffee is the perfect compliment to the dates. It’s made with a lightly roasted coffee beans boiled with spices and served in a traditional Arabic coffee pot. The color of the coffee is a beautiful golden color.  It is offered to the guest in a tiny cup (فنجان أو فنجال) known as a finjan or finjal. The cup is filled only about three quarters full. The guest drinks it and it is refilled by the host, this continues until the guest gently rocks the finjan back and forth, in order to let the host know he has had enough. Ahlan wa Sahlan!


Everyone adds their own blend of spices. The following is my special recipe. Sahtain!

3 tablespoons lightly roasted ground coffee
4 cups of boiling water
2 tablespoons of ground cardamom
2 cloves
A pinch of ground ginger
A pinch of saffron

Begin by boiling the water in a pot on the stove.
Add the coffee and the spices. Bring to a full boil then simmer for at least a half an hour. Strain the coffee to remove spices and coffee grounds. Serve in an Arabic coffee pot. 60979D29-70FD-415D-A651-4B15542E317E

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