Libyan cuisine

Libyan cuisine is the cooking traditions, practices, foods and dishes associated with the country of Libya. The cuisine derives much from the culinary traditions of the Mediterranean and North Africa, with an Italian influence, a legacy from the days when Libya was an Italian colony. One of the most popular Libyan dishes is a thick highly-spiced soup, known simply as Sharba Libiya, or Libyan soup. Sharba Libiya contains many of the ingredients of many other Libyan dishes, including onions, tomatoes, lamb (or chicken), chilies, cayenne pepper, saffron, chickpeas, mint, cilantro and parsley. Pork consumption is forbidden in accordance with Sharia, religious laws of Islam. Tripoli is Libya's capital, and the cuisine here is particularly influenced by Italian cuisine. Pasta is common, and many seafood dishes are available. Southern Libya cuisine is more traditionally Arab. Common fruits and vegetables include figs, dates, oranges, apricots and olives. Bazin is a common Libyan food made with barley flour and a little plain flour, which is then formed into a rounded, smooth dome placed in the middle of the dish. The sauce around the dough is made by frying chopped onions with lamb meat, adding turmeric, salt, cayenne pepper, black pepper, fenugreek, sweet paprika, and tomato paste. Potatoes may also be added, eggs are boiled and arranged around the dish, and the dish is often served with lemon and fresh or pickled chillies known as amsayar. Batata mubattana (filled potato) is another popular dish in Libyan cuisine that consists of fried potato pieces filled with spiced minced meat and covered with egg and breadcrumbs. Additional common foods and dishes include: Asida is an Arab dish made up of a cooked wheat flour lump of dough, sometimes with added butter or honey. Bureek, turnovers Couscous, a North African dish of semolina Breads Harissa is hot chili sauce commonly eaten in North Africa. Main ingredients include bird's eye chili peppers, serrano peppers and other hot chillis and spices such as garlic paste, coriander, red chili powder, caraway and olive oil. Hassaa, a gravy Magrood, Date-filled cookies and Ghreyba, butter cookies Mhalbiya, a rice pudding Mutton, meat of an adult sheep Rub is a thick dark brown, very sweet syrup extracted from dates or carob that is used widely in Libya, usually with Asida Shakshouka is prepared using aged mutton or lamb jerky as the meat base of the meal, and is considered a traditional breakfast meal.[citation needed] Sherba, lamb and vegetable soup with mint and tomato paste Tajeen, spiced lamb with a tomato and paprika sauce Usban, a traditional Libyan sausage