Saudi Press

Saudi Arabia and the world
Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Gaza Strip's "Watermelon Salad" Divides Locals: Unorthodox Delicacy Sparks Debate

Gaza Strip's "Watermelon Salad" Divides Locals: Unorthodox Delicacy Sparks Debate

A unique delicacy known as "watermelon salad" has polarized residents of the southern Gaza Strip. Contrary to its name, this dish, called Lasima, deviates from the expected sweet and refreshing taste associated with watermelons.
Referred to as "Lasima," "Ajar," or "Qursa" depending on the region, this hot and savory meal requires hours of preparation. While watermelon is an ingredient, its flavor is hardly discernible. The dish has garnered mixed reactions in a territory known for its culinary traditions, with residents in southern Gaza embracing it while those in the north shun it due to its hands-on preparation.

Lasima is a seasonal delicacy available for just two months a year. It is made using small, unripe melons that are roasted, peeled, and mixed with roasted eggplants, thinly sliced tomatoes, lemon, garlic, onion, and olive oil. The mixture is then enjoyed with a special dough baked in the fire's ashes.

The dish is often served in a large clay bowl, earning its name "Lasima," meaning "messy." It is believed by some to have originated over a century ago with the Bedouin Arab tribes in Egypt's neighboring Sinai desert. Others claim it as a traditional Palestinian food, although evidence supporting this assertion is scarce, as the dish is primarily popular in southern Gaza near the Sinai border.

Seventy-year-old Amona Abu Rjila from Khuzaa recalls her parents and grandparents preparing Lasima outdoors during watermelon season, viewing it as a traditional Palestinian dish with Bedouin roots. However, farther north, the dish receives little recognition, with objections mainly directed at its perceived unclean preparation involving bare hands.

In an attempt to challenge the dish's negative perception, social media content creator Mohammed Aborjela distributed samples of Lasima in smaller clay pots to random passers-by in Gaza City. While many respondents had never heard of the dish before, those who tried it expressed their approval.

The video showcasing the tasting experience garnered over 1,000 comments, primarily from intrigued northerners who were curious about the taste but put off by the unconventional preparation methods. Some individuals expressed their reservations about the dish's appearance, while others were intrigued after watching a video featuring women preparing it using what they considered "clean cooking means."

As debates surrounding Lasima continue, the unique delicacy remains a source of culinary diversity within the Gaza Strip, offering distinct flavors that evoke varying opinions among locals.

Related Articles

Saudi Press
Death of Iran's President Raisi Stirs Succession Race for Supreme Leader
ICC Seeks Arrest Warrants for Israeli and Hamas Leaders
Saudi Arabia's Flourishing Venture Capital Sector Attracts International Investments
Saudi Aviation Sector Boosts Economy with $21 Billion Contribution
Blinken orders crackdown on Israel-Hamas leaks
Future Aviation Forum 2024 to Propel Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030
What Happens If an Iranian President Dies in Office?
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi Reportedly Killed in Helicopter Crash
Saudi Arabia Advances Procurement and Supply Chain Innovation
Saudi Arabia’s Holdings in US Treasuries Rise to $135.9 Billion
Saudi Arabia Emerges as a Hub for Sustainable Technology Manufacturing
UN General Assembly Approves Palestinian Membership Bid
Teens Forming Friendships with AI Chatbots
WhatsApp Rolls Out Major Redesign
Neuralink's First Brain Implant Experiences Issue
Apple Unveils New iPad Pro with M4 Chip, Misleading AI Claims
OpenAI to Announce Google Search Competitor
Apple Apologizes for Controversial iPad Pro Ad Featuring Instrument Destruction
FedEx Airlines Boeing 767 cargo plane lands on nose at Istanbul Airport
Apple Faces Significant Sales Decline Amid AI Integration Delay
Netanyahu's Firm Stance Amid Rafah Hostage Talks
BlackRock to Establish Saudi Investment Firm
Dubai's New Al Maktoum International Airport: World's Largest with ₹2900 Crores Investment, 5 Runways, and 260 Million Annual Capacity
New UK Laws: Banning Weak Passwords for Internet-Connected Devices to Enhance Cybersecurity
Blinken on Gaza: Ceasefire is Key to Humanitarian Crisis Resolution
UAE Prime Minister Announces $544M for Home Repairs after Historic Rains, Vows to Learn from Experience
Germany Sends New Frigate to Red Sea to Protect Ships Amid Houthi Attacks
Isfahan Explosions: US Media Reports Israel's Retaliatory Strikes on Iran
Four Dead, Dubai Airport Disrupted: UAE's Heaviest Rains in 75 Years Cause Flooding and Flight Chaos
Dubai's Historic Flooding: Homes Ruined, Airport Disrupted Due to Lack of Storm Drains
Meteorologist Warns of 'Weather Wars' Amid Debate over Dubai Rain and Cloud Seeding
Saudi Arabia Leads in Artificial Intelligence Development: Ranked First by Stanford University Index
Dubai's Airport and Roads Disrupted for Third Day Amid Heavy Rain and Flooding: 1,285 Flights Cancelled or Diverted
Doha Hamad Overtakes Singapore Changi as World's Best Airport in Skytrax Awards 2024
Dubai Airports: Stranded Tourists 'Living on Duty Free,' Desperate for Food and Water
Turkish President Erdogan to Host Hamas Leader Haniyeh Amidst Israel Tensions
Creative menu of a Pizza restaurant..
Heavy Rains Cause Flooding in UAE and Oman: 18 Lives Lost
Look at this weather in Dubai. It looks like the end of days
You can be a very successful player, but a player with character is another level!
Come to Dubai, ya Habibi
Stay safe, ya Habibi
Dubai underwater, Influencers are stranded in their Rolls Royces in flooded roads as skies turn black in apocalyptic scenes as storm hits region.
Unprecedented Flooding Disrupts Dubai
Experience the Future of Dining: My Visit to an AI-Powered Burger Joint
Ajman Crown Prince Declares Remote Work Day for Government Employees Due to Weather (Except Essential Jobs)
UK Urges Israel to Avoid Escalation in Iran-Israel Tensions: 'Time to Be Smart'
Iran's New Strategy: Direct Retaliation Against Israel After Damascus Consulate Attack
Saudi Finance Minister to Lead Delegation at IMF-World Bank Meetings: Discussing Global Economic Developments and Saudi Arabia's Three-Year Chairmanship