MUSCAT, June 24 – For farmers in the Sultanate, this is the ‘Al Tabseel’ season, during which they process the dates they have collected.
A traditional practice still followed across the country, ‘Al Tabseel’ focuses on date palms that still have a yellowish colour.
After the harvest, the dates are collected at a special place for cooking called ‘Tarkibah’.
Made of clay, it consists of two holes. While the first hole is used to fire the wood, the other allows the smoke to escape.
Farmers collect their harvest (Al Mabsily dates) and put them in huge pots called ‘Marajel’. These fresh dates are boiled in these pots for about half an hour.
Then the boiled dates are taken to an open space called Al Mestah. Farmers in ‘Alfath’, a small village located in Wilayat Al mudhaibi (North Al Sharqiyah) dry these dates under the sun for four days.
Later, both men and women store dates in a proper manner. A huge quantity of these dates are packed in large bags called ‘Joniyah’, made from natural materials.
Local farmers usually invite relatives and friends to celebrate the final process of ‘Al Tabseel’.
“We share our produce with each other. Many display their harvest in the local markets where they sell large quantity of dates,” locals told the Observer.
Some of these are exported to the nearby countries.
YAHYA AL SALMANI