In this installment of “The World’s Table,” we introduce tabbouleh salad, which is familiar throughout the Middle East, including Qatar. The refreshing scents of parsley and lemon are perfect for the hot season.
With a per capita GDP of about $100,000, Qatar is the richest country in the world. The foundation for this prosperity is the export of liquefied natural gas, or LNG, produced at the North Field gas field—one of the largest gas fields in the world. Some $16 million worth is imported annually by Japan (2013), supporting our energy demand. Marubeni established the Doha Office in 1980 and joined the LNG project in 1985, helping to provide a stable supply with numerous shipments since 1997. And in addition to exporting Qatari crude oil and petroleum products as well as chemical products, we are actively engaged in infrastructure projects that support people’s lives, including power generation business and sewage treatment facilities, as well as the construction, operation, and maintenance of pumping stations. Marubeni signed a memorandum of understanding with Qatar University in April 2012 to make a donation totaling $6 million over a period of five years in the area of contributing to society. Qatar University is donating small encyclopedias introducing the donor country of Japan in Arabic to elementary and junior high schools in Qatar. Marubeni donations are expected to further contribute to strengthening relations between the two countries, by continuing to offer courses related to Japan, and inviting students to visit Japan.
Qatar is located next to Saudi Arabia, on a peninsula that protrudes into the Arabian Sea. It is a small country—with an area of 11,427 km2 (about as wide as Akita Prefecture in Japan), with a population of about two million, including foreign workers. The majority of the country is desert, and the population is concentrated in the leading city of the Middle East, the capital city of Doha. Once ridiculed as the "most boring town in the world," there is a focus on tourism business in recent years.
There is a "desert safari," for example, as only could be found in a desert country. If you drive about an hour away from Doha, the whole area is desert, so you can take off across the vast sand dunes in a 4WD vehicle. It is an amazing thrill—like riding a roller coaster! After taking in that exhilaration, you can enjoy the striking scenery in front of you, with the ocean and the desert stretching to the neighboring country of Saudi Arabia. We also recommend the "Dhow Cruise," featuring the traditional local boat known as the "dhow." You can relax and gaze at the skyscrapers of Doha on this cruise. If you enjoy shopping, check out the "Souq Waqif" open-air market. With folk art, jewelry, household goods, and Arabian eateries, you can experience Arab culture just by walking around.
If you have the chance, you should definitely consider sightseeing in Qatar!
|Mint leaf||About 10 to 15 leaves|
|Couscous (medium grain) *||2 tablespoons|
|Olive oil||40 ml|
|Lemon juice||20 ml|
|Black pepper||1/2 teaspoon|
* Use couscous as is—without steaming or boiling.
What is Couscous?
Couscous is like pasta, as it is made from the raw material durum wheat. Couscous is small and granular, and there are a variety of types and sizes, including fine grain, medium grain, large grain, and whole grain.
Nishiyama Kogyo Akasaka Bld. 1F, 2-15-18, Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo
From: “Shareholder’s guide Marubeni,” Vol.116 (published in June 2014)