Culture and Food in Saudi Arabia Term Paper

Culture and Food in Saudi Arabia
A look at how the hospitality and food traditions in Saudi Arabia reflect the nation's cultural and religious values.
# 149402 | 1,558 words | 7 sources | MLA | 2011 | KE
Published on Dec 13, 2011 in Ethnic Studies (Middle East) , Nutrition (Food) , Middle Eastern Studies (General)

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The paper demonstrates how the traditional foods in Saudi Arabia depict the culture of the Saudi Arabian people. The paper focuses on three major influences on Saudi Arabia cooking: the ancient Arabian dominance of the spice paths, the nomadic Bedouin traits, and the food restrictions as given in the Quran. The paper describes the culture of hospitality and the range of popular dishes commonly served by the people.

From the Paper:

"The very old Arabian culture of hospitality that developed has really not changed much until the present time. In Saudi Arabia how well somebody treats his/her guests is a direct confirmation of the kind of person she or he is. It is a common practice to give an allowance for an extra portion while doing the cooking of a meal. This is usually in order to ready in case of an unexpected visitor. When a meal is over, there ought to be always a good portion of meal left over otherwise it may be taken to mean that the guests had not been fully satisfied with the cooking style. I wish to add here that this is identical to some African cultures which also considers food as uniting factor. To a Saudi Arabian native, entertaining is quite joyous and is considered an opportunity and honor if guests are persuaded to remain for yet another meal time. The guests are expected respond with gifts as a sign of appreciation for the host (Safer Kahtani and Dean Schreiner 6).
"According to the Qu'uran, pork is considered as an impure and that animal blood is quite polluting. Equally alcohol is strictly forbidden by the book. This is the reasons why bars are quite rare in Saudi Arabia. Actually alcohol is forbidden and as result there exists severe penalties for breaking that law. It should be noted that, for those wishing to tour Saudi Arabia, this law applies to all nationals irrespective of religion. The Arabic fruit drinks and coffee are the popular alternatives."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Joseph Hegarty and Barry O'Mahony, "Gastronomy: a phenomenon of cultural expressionism and an aesthetic for living," International Journal of Hospitality Management, 2001, 20.1. pp. 3-13.
  • Al Kabsa, "Saudi rice and meat dish". 2009. Retrieved on 11october 2009 from:
  • Kwintessential, "Saudi Arabia - Language, Culture, Customs and Etiquette," 2009, Retrieved on 11 October, 2009 from:
  • Foods, "Food in Saudi Arabia," 2007, retrieved on 11 October, 2009 from:
  • Safer Kahtani and Dean Schreiner, "Composite Food Demand System for Saudi Arabia," Retrieved on 11 October,2009 from:

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

Culture and Food in Saudi Arabia (2011, December 13) Retrieved August 05, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Culture and Food in Saudi Arabia" 13 December 2011. Web. 05 August. 2020. <>