Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Aqaba 3

It was time for a subsistence and WC stop.  Ashraf sat us down and said “ I have a surprise for you “ and out came servings of a Jordanian favourite Kanafa.... YUM!  Goats cheese on the bottom a kind of crumbed pastry/pasta on top sprinkled with Pistachios drizzled with honey and oil, served warm... Bring more that was delicious. I wonder if we can get that down at Auburn or Granville.

We then did a little walking tour of the local souk and shops.... This is when Ashraf won me over (well probably the second time after the Kanafa ) one of the men on the tour had a whinge about us girls looking in the shops when Ashraf quickly put him in his place and said “Let them look, they are enjoying themselves, you should be good and patient with your wives, treat them like queens...... happy wife, happy life!!”  Yay Team Ashraf!!

Ding Ding Ding.... now it is time for surprise No 2..... We are taken into a back alley and told to sit in these plastic chairs... all around us are men sitting around smoking water pipes, playing cards and drinking coffee or tea.  Our first thought is OMG he is going to bring us a water pipe to smoke. But no out come these tall red drinks.  Served cold and very refreshing not at all like the sickly sweet appearance they have...  They are made by soaking red hibiscus flowers in water then straining and serving ice cold.  It kind of reminded me of an unsweetened raspberry cordial.  So refreshing as now the day was starting to heat up....

Next stop .... his favourite nut and spice shop... in we go, free samples of smoked nuts and the wonderful aroma of ground coffee and cardamom had us reaching into for our wallets and walking out with one thing or another.

We are now heading into the fresh food section of the market.  Oh look a bakery!!  In we go here we were hit with the wonderful smell of fresh bread ... well fresh pita bread... piles of them ... more interesting was this shute that came down from the ceiling where a stream of freshly baked pitas came tumbling out... of course we all had a try..... man... we still haven’t had lunch yet... onward we go...

Now we are in the butcher section... eek... out the front they have fridges with hanging carcasses on display.... sheep and goats.... how do we know this.... because they have left the heads and tails on just so you know how fresh they are !!!

My one regret was not buying a mango in the fruit section as Ashraf says they have the best.


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