Pirran (brother, fellow food adventurer) arrived back from Qatar this morning, and had brought my requested merchandise - Arabic coffee and dozens of pastries. The coffee is made with unroasted, ground coffee and a variety of spices and other items, such as lichen (!) and cardamon. Pirran bought it from the souk, where they mix the coffee to order, from the various sacks of aromatic ingredients. I knew he had come up with the goods before he gave them to me, because the amazing smell of the coffee fills the room in an instant, despite it being in sealed plastic bags.
It is drunk in a glass, without milk or sugar, and it is addictive. Especially when used to wash down the sweet, buttery, fragrant pastries and sweetmeats, which are flavoured with rose water, pistachios, almonds and pinenuts.
The coffee and pastries together are an ideal breakfast combination, and are a taste of dusty, sunny, mysterious places.
I'm also grateful to Pirran for transporting the coffee though customs, because it just looks so dodgy...