Oriental cuisine is very varied. It uses plenty of vegetables, fruit, fresh herbs and spices. Apart from common kinds of vegetables, people in Arabic countries also eat olives, capers and a tasty vegetable named okra. Regarding meat, they consume mainly lamb and mutton, less beef. Poultry is also very popular. Arabs are really hospitable. They do not deal with serious matters while dining, atmosphere is generally relaxed. An invitation to dinner is a common thing.
In a traditional conception, repasts used to be served in bowls on tablecloths lying either on a carpet or on a low table. Diners usually sat on pillows and ate the food using their right hand. Nowadays, such dining can be seen less and less. The European way of dining has also begun to dominate in Arabic countries and cutlery is used for eating.
Traditional Arabic food is a time-consuming ceremony which starts by serving "mezzé" - both hot and cold rich vegetables and meat appetizers. Sometimes, soup follows the appetizer and after that the main course is served. It consists of various kinds of grilled meat. Arabs wash food down with black tea or alternatively with the Ayran drink - a refreshing yoghurt drink, which can be seasoned with mint and garlic and is also good for digestion. Lastly, it is time for classical strong Arabic coffee with cardamom.