Image 1 of 10: The tradition of decorating eggs at Easter, is one shared in the Middle East. The Arabs love their intricate designs as witnessed by their embroidery traditions.
Image 1 of 10: Mamoul: Date cookies, as habitually consumed as part of the Muslim Eid, are enjoyed, and offered, at Easter in the Arab world.
Image 1 of 10: Date nut bread: Date nut bread is the perfect addition to a hot cup of coffee, as a light, after dinner dessert, or even as a quick breakfast on the go.
Image 1 of 10: Chocolate eggs have become a universal favorite aspect of Easter time. This titillating display at a chocolatier in Amman, Jordan, reminds us of the chocolate appeal now entrenched in this holiday. Who doesn't like a chocolate egg?
Image 1 of 10: Kibbeh bi Sinniyeh is a Lebanese pride and joy on a plate. Kibbeh Pie or literally Kibbeh on a Tray is popular all year round, but holds particular popularity at Easter for those Christians who have been fasting Lent.
Image 1 of 10: Halawah is a type of dense Middle Eastern-wide enjoyed sweet. Since it is primarily a nut-butter of sorts, it can be spread on bread, taken alone or accompanied by a chocolate coating or stuffed in pastry. Also familiar as 'halva', it is a crumbly confection made from tahini (sesame paste). Too sweet for some, it is a treat at Easter.
Image 1 of 10: Stuffed dates make an eloquent partner to the Arabic bitter cardamon infused-coffee. Stuffed with almonds, candied orange or walnuts, these are an elegant version of the region's staple date that are fit for the occasion of Easter gifting or serving.
Image 1 of 10: Warak Annab aka Warak Dawaleh are those globally popularized stuffed vine leave rolls spun, or wrapped, differently in Greece, Turkey, Iran and the Arab region. Denizens of the Arab world and grape vine tribe know that they come served cool & vegetarian in olive oil, or hot & stuffed with meat. A comfort food favorite doubles as an Easter luxury.
Image 1 of 10: Roast lamb in the Middle East is dubbed 'roasto'. Rather than the traditional roast lamb with mint of the western world, this dish uses a different set of spices, and is often crammed with whole garlic cloves, inset in the slices. At Easter or celebratory occasions these meat favorites are brought out.
Image 1 of 10: Grilled lamb chops are enjoyed in the Arab world with rice or with potatoes as is the custom in the West. Lamb chops are an accompaniment to Warak Annab (stuffed vine leaves) and stuffed courgettes.
On the occasion of the Western Church's Easter weekend, starting this Good Friday, we think about Easter time and its traditions in the food department throughout the Arab world. Arabs have food to suit every occasion as well as season.
Much of the Arab world, including Lebanon, Iraq and Syria, celebrate Easter with the Western world, which falls on April 8th this year, that is Easter Sunday.
Palestine and Jordan, as well as Egypt tend to mark their Eastern Easter the week after, which in the case of 2012 falls on April 15th (Easter Sunday), with Good Friday aptly taking its Friday 13th "Last Supper" place.
In Egypt, Sham el-Nessim which falls the day after Easter, is celebrated in the food department by Muslim and Christians alike. They eat salty fish and often decorate eggs, as the occasion blends in with Easter time connotations.
If you're Arab and living at home or abroad, tell us how you're marking Easter this year - what you're eating this Easter time. Do share if you'll be remembering this occasion with food to fill your Spring time bellies. Fish, chocolate, eggs? Make our mouths water!