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Yemeni Mateet (breakfast soup)

Updated: Feb 24, 2020

Yemeni mateet مطيط (also known as zoum زوم for some) is a yogurt and milk based breakfast soup with spices, onions, and chili peppers. Some are more tangy than others. I like mine with a more savory flavor and a slight hint of tanginess from the yogurt and a kick from the spicy green peppers.

Mateet is traditionally served in a stone magla. You can serve it in soup bowls too :) There are many ways to make it. I have a classic recipe in my Sifratna cookbook , but wanted to share a different variation with you all on here.


1/2 cup barley flour نص كباية دقيق الشعير

1/2 cup all purpose flour نص كباية دقيق أبيض

1 cup whole milk plain yogurt كباية زبادي كامل الدسم

7 cups whole milk سبع كبايات حليب كامل الدسم

1 large yellow onion, cut into large pieces بصلة صفراء كبيرة, قطع كبار

1 tsp dried oregano ملعقة ص زعتر ناشق

1/2 tsp ground cumin نص ملعقة ص كمون

1/2 tsp ground coriander نص ملعقة ص كزبرة ناشفة

1/2 tsp garlic powder (optional) نص ملعقة ص بودرة ثوم

1/2 tsp ground black pepper نص ملعقة ص فلفل أسود

1 tsp Yemeni chili powder or regular chili powder (optional) ملعقة ص ملحي يمني أو فلفل أحمر حار

3/4 cup chopped cilantro ثلاثة أرباع كباية كزبرة مطحونة

1/2 cup chopped green onion نص كباية بصل أخضر مقطع

1/2 cup chopped green pepper نص كباية بيبار أخضر مقطع

1 jalapeno, seeded فلفل أخضر حار

4-5 garlic cloves أربع أو خمس حبات ثوم

Salt to taste ملح حسب المذاق


  1. In a food processor, pulse fresh cilantro, green onions, green pepper, dried oregano, cumin, ground coriander, black pepper, garlic powder, and fresh garlic cloves. Set aside.

  2. In a pot, combine barley flour, all purpose flour, milk, and yogurt. Mix well before turning on the heat to avoid clumps. Once its well combined, place over medium-low heat and whisk regularly.

  3. Once the milk mixture is warm, add chopped yellow onion. Bring to a gentle simmer and whisk regularly to avoid scalding the milk.

  4. Once the soup comes to a gentle simmer, add the herb and spice mixture then reduce low heat. Allow the mateet to simmer gently for 5-10 minutes to develop flavor.

  5. Add chili powder as desired and adjust salt, cumin, and pepper to taste.


  • You can make this ahead of time (even a day or two before) and simply reheat it on the stove top. Make sure you consistently use a rubber spatula to mix so the dairy doesn't scald at the bottom and burn. If you feel like the soup has over-thickened, just add some water while reheating.

  • Serve with warm naan or toasted bread.

  • If you don't have Yemeni chili pepper, add a whole spicy green chili that you can later remove from the soup. This will give the soup a subtle kick. You can also add the seeds from the jalapeno or green chili pepper to the pulsed herb and herbs for a spicier soup.

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