Libyan asida served with rub and molten sheep ghee; the traditional way to eat Libyan asida is to do so using the index and middle fingers of the right hand.
Location of Libya

The cuisine of Libya is a mix of Berber, Arab and Mediterranean cuisines with Ottoman and Italian influence.[1] One of the most popular Libyan dishes is bazin, an unleavened bread prepared with barley, water and salt.[2] Bazin is prepared by boiling barley flour in water and then beating it to create a dough using a magraf, which is a unique stick designed for this purpose.[3]

In Tripoli, Libya's capital, the cuisine is particularly influenced by Italian cuisine.[4] Pasta is common, and many seafood dishes are available.[4] Southern Libyan cuisine is more traditionally Arab and Berber. Common fruits and vegetables include figs, dates, oranges, apricots and olives.[4]

Pork consumption is forbidden to Muslims in Libya, in accordance with Sharia, the Islamic law. The consumption of alcoholic drinks is also forbidden to Libyan Muslims.

Common foods and dishes

Bazin (center) served with a stew and whole hard-boiled eggs
Egg shakshouka

Bazin is a common Libyan food made with barley flour and a little plain flour, which is boiled in salted water to make a hard dough, and then formed into a rounded, smooth dome placed in the middle of the dish. The sauce around the dough is made by frying chopped onions with lamb meat, turmeric, salt, cayenne pepper, black pepper, fenugreek, sweet paprika, and tomato paste. Potatoes can also be added. Finally, boiled eggs are arranged around the dome. The dish is then served with lemon and fresh or pickled chili peppers, known as amsyar. Batata mubattana (filled potato) is another popular dish that consists of fried potato pieces filled with spiced minced meat and covered with egg and breadcrumbs.

Additional common foods and dishes include:

Desserts and beverages

All alcoholic drinks have been banned in Libya since 1969,[4] in accordance with Sharia, the religious laws of Islam. However, illegally imported alcohol is available on the black market, alongside a homemade spirit called Bokha. Bokha is often consumed with soft drinks as mixers.[8]

See also


  1. ^ Falola, Toyin (2004). Teen Life in Africa. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 142. ISBN 978-0-313-32194-8.
  2. ^ Rozario, P. (2004). Libya. Countries of the world. Gareth Stevens Pub. p. 40. ISBN 978-0-8368-3111-5.
  3. ^ Davidson, A.; Jaine, T.; Davidson, J.; Saberi, H. (2006). The Oxford Companion to Food. Oxford Companions. OUP Oxford. p. 1356. ISBN 978-0-19-101825-1.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Libya." Accessed June 2011.
  5. ^ a b c d "Libyan Food." Archived 2019-09-06 at the Wayback Machine Archived 2019-07-10 at the Wayback Machine. Accessed June 2011.
  6. ^ Maloufshomt, Greg (2008). Artichoke to Za'atar: Modern Middle Eastern Food. U of California P. p. 70. ISBN 978-0-520-25413-8.
  7. ^ "Libyan Imbakbaka". 16 January 2021.
  8. ^ Olivesi, Marine. "Libyans risk poisoning for a sip of illegal hooch in their dry nation". Public Radio International. Retrieved 30 January 2020.