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General Discussion

Define Saudi Arabian cuisine (split from L.A. board)

suvro | Apr 22, 200802:58 PM     32

The Chowhound Team spilt this discussion from its orginal location. If you have tips for finding Saudi cuisine in Los Angeles, please go here:
http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/480911

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I just returned from my first visit to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
While there, I was told there is little that is authentic Saudi cuisine. Most of the food served is Lebanese in origin. At the Sheraton Riyadh, both the excellent breakfast and lunch buffets would have a Lebanese section and a Western section. The Sri Lankan chef who prepared the eggs for breakfast and one or two dishes for lunch told me that most of the items were prepared by chefs from South Asia and Phillipines since most Saudis did not work in the service industry.

During our workdays at their national lab (King Abdulazziz City of Science and Technology - KACST) their cafeteria served Lebanese and western style items. Of the 3 restaurants we visited near our hotel, 2 were Lebanese (one sit down, one fast food) and the third was Indian.

One of the scientists we met was getting married the day I was flying out (otherwise I would have loved to have attended his wedding). When I asked what special items would be served at the wedding, they scratched their heads and said "Nothing" - same lamb kebabs, pullao, and traditional Lebanese dishes.

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