This is not a typical breakfast – breakfast is usually a light meal eaten at home and is just for family and overnight visitors, almost always family. Any Dhofari man or woman is welcome to eat any meal at the house of any close relative, but usually they only share breakfast if they are staying in the house.
The timing varies from after the dawn (fajr) prayer to 11am on weekends and holidays. School children are fed before they leave the house, with the mother(s) eating before or after feeding younger children when they wake up and perhaps sharing tea and bread with a neighbor in the mid-morning. Eggs (scrambled, fried or boiled) are often set out and children often eat cereal and sometimes pancakes.
Almost everyone drinks tea, either plain, with a lot of sugar, with milk and/ or spices. In houses, thermoses are made by or under the direction of senior women and set out throughout the day. Some Dhofaris simply have tea or tea with toast (sliced bread from a loaf); pita bread (khbus lebnani) with butter, jam, honey and/ or processed cheese; round, thick traditional bread (called variously tanoor or kak in Arabic or godom or thakin in Gibali/ Shahri); store bought biscuits; a parata (plain or with dal or eggs inside) bought from a small, road-side restaurant or brought to the office by the “messenger,” a man who brings tea, light food, newspapers and runs errands.
The photo above shows a picnic breakfast with prepared omelettes, boiled eggs, cereal, bread, cheese, fruit, a thermos of tea and various condiments including hummus. This would be eaten on a holiday or weekend morning with the eggs prepared in the house and all the food packed into the car, then the family driving to a scenic spot to enjoy a leisurely breakfast.
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