Today I ordered my own food!

It is by far my favorite street food local dish of any kind. The fahteera is essentially a burrito made with one, main ingredient; dressed with chopped tomatoes, black olives (probably canned), and yellow peppers; and wrapped in a warm piece of aesh (like the Indian naan available in the States, but softer and smaller and made a couple hours or minutes before it’s in my hands). Hamada likes tuna fahteera, and I think mushroom fahteera is good, but the best is gibnaroomi – gibna meaning cheese and gibnaroomi being a hard, French cheese in Arabic. If I eat just one (they’re about 7 inches long and rather flat without meat) every few days, the cheese does not upset my lactose-intolerant tummy.

“Wahid gibnaroomi fahteera men-rear fil fel, lao sahma-hot.”

“One French-cheese wrap without peppers, please.”

I’ve been learning and trying to speak Egyptian colloquial Arabic, but I believe next week I’ll begin lessons in Modern Standard Arabic. The two languages use the same alphabet but almost entirely different words. For example, “without” is “men-rear” in Egyptian and “bedoon” in standard.

Eating my fahteera on the way back to school
Eating my fahteera on the way back to school

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