Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Food in KSA - Mahalabiya

Have you ever been to a store, saw a weird-looking/sounding food and thought, “I MUST TRY THIS! WHOA!”

Only to come back home and realize that it was just a simple vanilla pudding.

Or, you went to Saudi Arabia, specifically Mecca and Medina, and saw a pair of elderly looking at the food while muttering, “Ape kejadahnye mahalabiya ni?”

I’m almost tempted to translate that to “What the hell is mahalabiya?” Oh wait I just did.

“Haram jadah!” And then they’ll laugh. “Orang ingat kita sebut haram jadah nak gi Haram Jeddah.”

Haram jadah – some sort of playful curse words, usually used by the elderly. Maybe. The direct meaning of that is, hmm…bastard?

7aram and Jeddah – Mecca and Jeddah (cities in KSA)

I used to see a lot of taxis in the cities back then (not so much nowadays), yelling the places they’ll drive you to, for example, “El-7aram! Jeddah! El-7aram! Jeddah!”

(I just have to write the ‘h’ in 7aram as 7 because Haram actually means pyramid, and I don’t want other people to be confused, you see)

And those elders will snicker and say, “Haram jadah. Haha haram jadah.”

It was weird, indeed it was. 8D

Where was I? Oh yeah food! Why did I talk about taxis all of a sudden?

Anyway, usually I would pop in and say, “Tu dadih je kot makcik…”

Oh yeah, that’s just a normal pudding, auntie.

“Dadih? Haram jadah betullah.”


It's great to actually know what to eat and what you probably don't want to eat, isn't it? Oh and don't thank me, just remember me in your prayer, I'm sure you will.


Mahalabiya – مهلبية – pudding

(I can’t find a photo of a store-made mahalabiya (!!!) so I nicked the photo from here)
(I’ll update this if I bought another one of these, of course)

How does it taste like?

It’s a milk and rice pudding. You can expect it to be quite tasteless (strictly my opinion) but the one that I ate was vanilla flavored so it wasn’t too bad. There are tons of better puddings on the market, though. And it won’t fill your stomach. Of course, it’s just a dessert after all. Don’t expect it to be something awesome and will completely satisfy your stomach though because it really won’t. You’ll be extremely disappointed like this certain person. You’re looking at one. Yeah the one who types this yeah there she is.


Should you try it?

Depends on you really but it’s not that special to be honest.

I don’t know what to say anymore. This thing is really plain.

But give it a go, sometimes your mouth would crave something soft and fresh after constantly being shoved with sugary and spicy stuff. I’d rather think it’ll be nice on a hot day. And it’s hot in this part of the world every single day (okay it might rain once in a while but that’s rare.)

The next food might be a bit more interesting, so look forward to that. :)

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