A Taste of Sur: Must-Try Dishes in Sur, Oman

A Taste of Sur: Must-Try Dishes in Sur, Oman

Sur, located on the eastern coast of Oman, is a city of historical and cultural richness, attracting attention not only with its historical buildings but also with its rich and varied cuisine. It is possible to encounter delicious local flavours while walking through the streets of Sur, its historic harbour by the sea, traditional bazaars and modern texture. This city offers visitors an unforgettable gastronomic experience by hosting the traditional dishes and local specialities of the Arabian Peninsula.


Muthbe is one of the original flavours of Sur cuisine and is a dish prepared on special occasions or important celebrations. This dish is made with lamb or chicken meat and enriched with special spice mixes and local ingredients. The special flavour of muthbe is achieved by marinating the meat for a long time and then cooking it slowly. The spices include authentic flavours such as cumin, cinnamon, black pepper and saffron. Muthbe is served with aromatic rice, fresh bread and special sauces.

Before making muthbe, lamb meat is chopped and slow cooked, usually with tail fat. During the cooking of the meat, spices and a special spice mix are added, which creates the intense aroma and flavour of the dish. Then, bulgur is added and mixed until all the ingredients are combined. The dish is cooked for a while to allow the bulgur to absorb the water and blend with the meat. Muthbe is characterised by a perfect combination of lamb and bulgur.


Thareed is one of the indispensable appetisers of Sur cuisine. Thareed, which has a hummus-like structure, is made with chickpea puree, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil. What makes this appetiser, which has a thin texture, special is the sumac and fresh herbs sprinkled on it. Thareed is served with fresh bread or pita bread, making it an enjoyable starter before or with the main course.

First, the meat (lamb or chicken) is cooked in a large pot. After the meat is cooked, vegetables such as chopped onions, garlic, peppers and tomatoes are added and fried together. Then, fresh spices and a special spice mix are added to add flavour. One of the key points of the cooking process is the addition of crushed bread. The broth and vegetables mixed in the bread absorb the bread and form a dense consistency. Thareed is boiled over a slow fire, allowing the ingredients to come together and the flavours to blend well. Finally, Thareed is usually served with coarsely chopped fresh herbs and lemon juice.

Kingfish Curry

Kingfish Curry is one of the important dishes made with fresh seafood due to the seaside location of Sur. Kingfish is cooked in a delicious curry sauce prepared with plenty of spices. Spices such as coconut milk, turmeric, coriander, coriander, ginger and garlic add a unique flavour to Kingfish Curry while preserving the fresh and natural taste of the seafood. Usually served with rice pilaf or tandoori bread, this flavour reflects Sur’s rich seafood heritage and takes the palate on a journey to the sea.


Ma’saree is a delectable dish from Middle Eastern cuisine, usually a combination of rice and meat. This delicious dish is especially popular in Saudi Arabia. The basic ingredients of ma’saree usually include lamb, rice, onions, spices and sometimes lentils. First, the meat is chopped and usually fried in oil. Chopped onion is added to the meat and the mixture is fried until caramelised. Then, washed rice and other ingredients are added. Water is added and the mixture is brought to a boil and cooked over low heat until the rice absorbs the water. 

Among the spices that make up the unique flavour of Ma’saree are aromatic ingredients such as cinnamon, black pepper and garam masala. The dish is cooked until the rice grains are crisp and the meat is richly flavoured. As a finishing touch, Ma’saree is often garnished with a side dish of fried onions or walnuts. In Saudi Arabian culture, Ma’saree is generally known as a feast of flavours shared on special occasions, family get-togethers or special events.

Kahwa (Traditional Coffee)

Kahwa is a traditional coffee drink in Sur. This coffee is specially prepared from green coffee beans. The unique flavour of Kahwa comes from a special blend enriched with spices. Spices such as cinnamon, cloves and cardamom create the distinctive flavour of the coffee. Kahwa is a drink served at special events, ceremonies to welcome visitors or social interactions. This traditional coffee is not only a drink, but also a symbol of culture and hospitality.


Halwa is a thick and sugary dessert that occupies an important place in the sweet world of Sur. Halwa is usually made on traditional festivals and special occasions and contains wheat flour, sugar, ghee (pure butter) and spices. The preparation process is very elaborate and long. This mixture is cooked slowly and stirred until it reaches a thick, smooth consistency. Roasted almonds or walnuts are added on top. Halwa has a special place among the traditional desserts of Sur and is a delicacy that is served and shared with guests.

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