Mullat al smeed is a semolina cracker bread made from flour, burghul (parboiled and cracked wheat), sesame seeds, and olive oil. Because of its relatively dry composition, mullat al smeed does not readily rot or go to stale.
Mullat al smeed originated in Jabal ‘Amel, in the south of Lebanon, and is especially associated with the village of Dayr Qanoun Ras al ‘Ayn. According to local tradition, it was developed to supply travellers to Mecca during their annual Hajj pilgrimage with sustenance as they journeyed long distances over land. They ate this cracker bread along the way and shared it with the guides of the caravans to give them the energy and encouragement to bring them to their destination. In Mecca, the pilgrims from Dayr Qanoun Ras al ‘Ayn and other parts of Jabal ‘Amel used to share mullat al smeed with fellow pilgrims from other parts of the world and it became known as “khebez Dayr Qanoun” (the bread of Dayr Qanoun). As travel times became shorter in the past century, many types of food designed for long journeys such as mullat al smeed started to disappear. Today it is usually baked for personal consumption and on special occasions.