Coffee is more than merely a drink; in Jordan it is surrounded with custom and treated with reverence. It is not only a symbol of hospitality and trust, it is a traditional sign of respect and a way to bring people together. The enjoyment and preparation of these national drinks follow centuries of traditions and form a cornerstone of Jordan’s culture.
Black, cardamom flavored Arabic coffee, also know as “qahwa sadad” , is deeply ingrained in the Jordanian culture. Serving coffee to guests is a large part of the Hashemite Kingdom’s warm hospitality
Is made from coffee beans roasted very lightly or heavily from 165°C to 210°C and cardamom, and is a traditional beverage in Arabian culture. Traditionally, it is roasted on the premises (at home or for special occasions), ground, brewed and served in front of guests. It is often served with dates or candied fruit.
This brewing method is common in middle east, and sometimes other spices like saffron (to give it a golden color), cloves, and cinnamon. Some people add a little evaporated milk to slightly alter its color; however, this is rare. It is served from a special coffee pot called “dallah” and the coffee cups are small with no handle called “fenjan”. The portions are small, covering just the bottom of the cup.
It is served in homes, and in good restaurants by specially clad waiters called “gahwaji”, and it is almost always accompanied with dates. It is always offered with the compliments of the house. It is also offered at most social events like weddings and funerals.
Merely starting to make coffee is a signal to families in neighboring tents that something is afoot: by pounding freshly roasted beans in a “mehbash” – a form of pestle and mortar, sometimes wood, sometimes metal – using a distinctive rattling or jangling sound, a man (it’s always a man) can send out a wordless invitation from his tent for all within earshot to gather round.