Meals in Pakistan

Video Transcript

(Note: This transcript has been edited for readability.)

"When you fill up your plate, it’s very important to take as much as you can eat because it’s very rude to leave something behind. And often, your host will keep refilling your plate forcibly, and you sort of have to eat everything because food is very precious, obviously because of all the poverty in the country. But also religiously, Islamically, food is almost holy. You don’t want to 'upset' the food, almost. So you have to make sure it all gets finished. A good way to show gratitude to people is to eat the food that’s offered to you. That makes them happier than any sort of verbal acknowledgement that you can give: that you were pleased to meet them, or thank you. If you ate the food, if you enjoyed the food, if you complimented the food, that’s the best thing you can do for your host."

A Pakistani national discusses meal etiquette and the importance of food in Pakistani culture.