Jordanian food takes much inspiration from its neighbouring countries in the Middle East and there is a lot of overlap with dishes, but you will find that many recipes include an abundance of herbs such as sage, mint, and thyme. Food in Jordan is also hearty with lots of thick bread and succulent meat. One thing is certain, though, you won’t finish a meal hungry!
Mansaf is Jordan’s national dish and an important traditional offering throughout the country. It consists of lamb chunks braised in a rich fermented and dried yoghurt sauce which is then served alongside spicy rice and pine nuts. The contrast of the soft lamb and crunchy pine nuts makes the taste buds dance and, if it wasn’t hearty enough already, it is often plated up with flatbreads; a popular side dish for any main meal.
Mezze is notorious in Jordan and is perhaps the most recognisable food in Jordan. They are appetizers served up before the main meal, although they are pretty filling in themselves! You might be offered hummus (mashed chickpeas and tahini) and falafel (deep friend meatballs made of mashed chickpeas) amongst many other small dishes to tickle your pre-dinner taste buds. Remember not to fill up on Mezze as you still have your heavy main course to come!
Kubbeh or Kibbeh
Another popular food in Jordan, Kubbeh (or Kibbeh) is herb covered minced meat edged with a bulgur crust and fried. It is shaped like a rugby ball and is a much sought-after dish amongst tourists to the country.
Made famous by the Druze people, this dish is made with labaneh (a thick yoghurt), roasted aubergine, and minced meat. The result is a rich, creamy dish that melts in the mouth. Like many other main dishes, it is likely to be served up with a side of bread to mop up the sauce.
Jordanian’s love their salads and there are a huge number that you may be served as a pre-dinner appetizer or alongside your main meal. Tabouleh is one of the most popular varieties and consists of finely chopped parsley and mint which has been tossed with bulgur wheat, onions, tomatoes and seasoned with national favourites, olive oil and lemon juice.
This Jordanian chicken dish is a concoction of potatoes, tomatoes, and onions served up with baked chicken (a rarer Jordanian meat). Sounds pretty basic, right? Don’t be fooled, though! The selection of spices used, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, pepper, and cardamom, gives it a mighty kick of flavour that will keep your taste buds tingling well after you’ve laid down your cutlery.
Zarb is a traditional Bedouin barbecue which sees a selection of meat and vegetables cooked in a rustic, underground pit. The method of cooking gives it a smoky flavour and ensures the meat is particularly tender. Watching the process is almost as fascinating as eating the outcome – but obviously not as tasty!
Is your tummy rumbling at the delicious dishes that Jordan has to offer? Experience it for yourself! We are offering £75 off our Jordan tours if you book this week, so quickly snap up our Jordan holiday deals and you could be tucking into this hearty array of dishes in no time!