To celebrate the 40th day after the death of the Shi'a imam Al-Hussein (son of Ali) in the battle of Karbala in 680 AD the people of Kfarroummane in Jabal `Amel (South Lebanon) prepare hreeseh, a dish made from wheat, chicken and meat, and distribute it freely to neighbors and passers-by . This year (a couple of days ago), eleven women cooked 600 kg of hreeseh in the center of the village (from Al Safir).
I have received a new book: Medieval Cuisine of the Islamic World by Lilia Zaouali. In the foreword, Charles Perry refers to harisa (hreeseh) as a Nabatean dish that is still made today, and describes it as "whole grain stewed with meat until done, and then beaten to a smooth, savory paste". Perry says the Arabs learned this dish from the Nabateans, who he says were the Aramaic-speaking Christians of Syria and Iraq.