Asterix and Obelix, the best start to a French film for 15 years

Asterix and Obelix, the best start to a French film for 15 years

RIYADH: The Culinary Arts Authority of the Saudi Ministry of Culture announced this month that groats It has been chosen as the national dish of Saudi Arabia, and skimmed as a national dessert.

the groats It is a stew consisting of cracked wheat, vegetables and a sauce to which lamb can be added. the skimmed It consists of buckwheat bites with a mixture of butter, honey, dates, molasses and sugar.

The authority’s announcement comes within the framework of the National and Regional Dishes Narratives initiative, which aims to identify and highlight popular dishes that are part of the culinary culture in the Kingdom. This initiative will include research to discover the dishes that best represent each region, the results of which are expected to be announced later this year.

In an exclusive interview with Arab NewsRakan Al-Arifi, an internationally known Saudi chef, welcomed the initiative which, according to him, It will highlight traditional Saudi dishes and place them at the forefront of the country’s culinary scene.

Al-Arifi, a member of the World Master Chefs Society and founder of Kit Catering, says: groats It originates from the central region of Najd and that there is more than one class.

We usually cook it Milk (curd), so it is known as “groats white,” he explains. “We also have a second type of groatswhich comes from Hail (northwest of Saudi Arabia), and it is red because we cook it with tomato sauce.”

The unique taste of this dish comes from the filling of clarified butter, caramelized onions and lemon powder.

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option groats As a national dish that reflects its popularity in Saudi society, as indicated by the Culinary Arts Authority, references to the dish can be found in heritage books dating back centuries. It is considered one of the most important dishes in the Saudi heritage and is known as the “master of dishes”.

Rakan Arifi claims that the main reason behind the existence groats It is very popular that people in the Najd region historically ate wheat instead of rice, as it required fewer resources.

“the groats It is a traditional dish enjoyed by everyone, young and old alike. “The dish has many flavours. It’s a bit salty, a little sour from buttermilk, and you can have it in winter or summer.”

According to the authority, this dish is served On happy occasions And although it originated in the central region, it has spread throughout the kingdom.

the skimmedMeanwhile, it is a dessert usually served for breakfast in Saudi homes, consisting of wheat flour, clarified butter, and honey or sugar. It is especially popular during the winter season. According to the authority, this dish dates back more than a century and is often served with Saudi coffee.

Rakan Al-Arifi—who is also a member of the Global Association of Master Chefs, the Culinary Guild of the Emirates, the Latin American Gastronomic Association Arejala International, and the Saudi Chefs Association—is glad that this dessert, which is native to Hail, will be known.

“the skimmed It is also made from wheat. We mix two kinds of flowers in skimmed: white and brown. “

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He adds that it is a popular breakfast dish because the wheat, clarified butter and honey provide energy and strength.

In addition to its great popularity, the originality of its flavors, and its importance in Saudi culture groats and the skimmed They were chosen as national dishes because they are easy to prepare with readily available ingredients, says UNHCR.

according to Arabic flavoursa cookbook recently published by Authority & Casey Editions, W skimmed It can be considered a pancake and bread mix due to its taste and texture. Small loaves of bread are easy to make and were traditionally baked on a flat iron teakConvex metal frying pan.

a word “skimmed” Means “the person who takes the small or small portion of the food”Which reflects the fact that the dish is prepared with simple and inexpensive ingredients.

Mr. Al-Arifi has been crowned the best chef in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia three times. In 2021, it won first place in the Culinary category at the National Culture Awards. He was the head chef at Sohail Restaurant in Riyadh and Al-Ula, where he created an authentic and unique menu.

He joined Al Khozama Group in 2022 to create a contemporary Saudi menu for Miz restaurant in Diriyah, and recently moved to Paris to pursue his advanced studies in French pastry.

This text is a translation of an article published on

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