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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for Must try dishes while in Oman - sample the unique flavours of Oman
Joanna James Joanna James
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Must try dishes while in Oman - sample the unique flavours of Oman

Oman has a long, rich culture that is admiral for many reasons, one of which is its amazing cuisine. From grilled meats to rich coffee, here are some must-try dishes during your visit to Oman.



Shuwa, which means grilled meat in Arabic, is a dish often prepared for special occasions such as Eid. Omani families begin cooking this delicacy a day prior to eating to ensure the meat is filled with as much flavour as possible. The meat served is usually goat, camel or lamb, which has been marinated in a combination of spices. Each household has their own unique spice blend, but typical spices used include nutmeg, coriander and cumin. After being left to marinate for a few hours, the meat is wrapped in palm or banana leaves and buried in a sand pit covered with coals. It's left there overnight and only pulled out when ready to be eaten. The meat is moist and tender, with a layer of spice around it. It is served with rice and homemade tomato sauce.


Kahwa (coffee)

Omani coffee is famous for its rich bitter taste and smooth texture. An essential part of Omani hospitality, Kahwa is made from roasted ground coffee mixed with cardamom powder and served with either dates or Halwa. Kahwa is consumed several times a day and it's not uncommon to see large pots of it prepared and taken when visiting neighbours.



Better known as kebab, Meshkak can be found on every street corner in Omani. Chunks of marinated beef, goat or chicken, marinated in a mix of spices, are grilled on wooden sticks over hot coals and served like fast food to hungry customers. Served with sweet tamarind chutney, you can opt to eat it straight off the stick or with flatbread.



Hawla can be found in many Middle Eastern and Asian countries, but Omani halwa has its own unique recipe. The Halwa is made with sugar, rose water, honey, eggs, nuts and spices, which are boiled together over a wood fire. The final product is a sticky sweet that is thick in texture and full of flavour. Halwa is usually served in a large dish with strong Kahwa.



Oman has several seafood dishes worth trying but Mashuai stands out with its fresh flavours and tangy sauce. A traditional Omani dish, Mashuai is grilled kingfish topped with a spice-infused lemon sauce.



Large palm tree plantations are abundant in Oman, so it's no surprise that the country has a variety of delicious dates on offer. Dates play an essential part in every meal and are even gifted as a sign of hospitality in Oman. Top hotels around the country always have dates on the menu for guests, like Sur Plaza Hotel, for example.



Majboos, also commonly known as makboos or kasbah, is a traditional dish which originates from Saudi Arabia and is famous all over the Gulf. The dish consists of meat, vegetables and spices cooked together and then mixed with long grain rice. Saffron and cardamom feature heavily in the dish, giving it an exotic flavour. Majboos is generally made for special occasions, accompanied by a salad, yoghurt or traditional flatbread.

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