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Makkah: Umrah visitors who travel to Makkah for spiritual renewal have the opportunity to enjoy culinary specialties.

As Ramadan comes to an end, visitors celebrate Eid al-Fitr with an array of traditional sweets prepared by the Meccans.

Among the many popular specialties are laddu, labaniya, and food, which are traditional sweets from the Hejaz region.

Fatima Qurban, founder of an association that supports productive families, explains that Makkah sweets are the jewel of the region’s cuisine and that everyone loves them.

And she says: “We have a lado made of yellow chickpeas. The labaniya, one of the ancient popular sweets that adorn the neighborhoods of Makkah Al-Mukarramah, in addition to the labaniya, is made of milk and coconut and is served in a cheerful atmosphere to add extra flavor to occasions such as weddings and holidays.”

She explains that there is another staple during the festivities: maamoul, which is a type of traditional biscuit with special spices.

“The current generation wants to add new flavors, like vanilla and chocolate, as well as some flavor and color enhancers,” she says again.

Another sweet dish that families in Makkah used to prepare was the mashabak, which was a deep-fried donut made of overlapping, overlapping strips of dough. It is served on special occasions and weddings.

“Pilgrims love to buy mashabak in the small shops in Mecca, which gives them a taste of the culinary heritage of this place.”

Rawia Farea, who specializes in making maamoul, says that biscuits used to be served exclusively during holidays and religious celebrations, but now they are found more often due to the increase in demand.

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Makkah families know the secret of the recipe for these delicious products and their production using methods and ingredients passed down through the ages.

Rawia Farea points out that Mecca sweets have their own touch and are part of the region’s culture and heritage.

Makkah Maamoul is an essential item in the iftar table. Sweets are present in every meal and play an important role during the Umrah and Hajj seasons, when visitors have the opportunity to sample these delicacies when visiting Makkah Al-Mukarramah.

Dessert maker Manial Ibrahim says that Saudi cuisine is displayed in hotels in Makkah Al-Mukarramah, and his sweets have become an integral part of that experience.

The most skilled artisans present sweet dishes as a main dish, thus becoming ambassadors of sweets for pilgrims and Umrah performers.

Products also have a certain nutritional value. Contains sugar, milk and animal fat. Its shelf life is short, as it is free from preservatives and is consumed on a daily basis.

Many visitors and pilgrims rush to buy sweets not only to enjoy their taste, but also to help preserve the cultural heritage of the region.

This text is a translation of an article published on

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About the Author: Irene Alves

"Bacon ninja. Guru do álcool. Explorador orgulhoso. Ávido entusiasta da cultura pop."

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