Middle Eastern Food

Yemeni bread “Bint Al-Sahn” (بنت الصحن)

This morning I woke up to freshly baked bread.  Not just any bread but a yemeni style bread called “Bint Al-Sahn” (بنت الصحن).  The word “Bint Al Sahn” literally means in arabic, “the plates daughter” or “the daughters plate”. Whenever I think of the translation I laugh to myself. I have no idea why its called this and anyone I ask is unsure as well.  Whatever the reason this is called “Bint Al-Sahn” (بنت الصحن), its one of Yemen’s most popular breads.

full view

“Bint Al-Sahn” (بنت الصحن) consists of multiple layers bread out over a large plate.  Each layer is padded with ghee or clarified butter when added. The top layer is also padded with ghee and egg wash.  To me its similar to being an oversized toasted croissant.  Normally “Sahn” (for short) is made when relatives come over or with a gathering of people. We’ve invited my relatives over hence the making of Sahn today.  Below in the next pic you will see we are having it with Arabic coffee and a side of honey.  Its tradition to add honey on the top which adds to the buttery flaky goodness of this dish.  Each bite is crunchy from the outer shell but warm & soft with the inner layers.  Don’t ask where are the forks, we dig right into this dish with our hands lol.  Its the only way to properly eat Arabic cuisine.

side view

4 replies »

    • I’ve asked family members many times before but no one seems to really know the answers besides that Yemeni People from the village lived off wheat, eggs, and milk and therefore made what they had from resources. That’s why a majority of Yemeni cuisine consists of breads. I could not find any sources though specifying the actual origins.


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