Ramzan Kareem is in full swing and the first ashra which is of Rehmat (Blessing) is about to finish already. In our part of the world, food is very much associated with Ramzan. Very different kinds of dishes are prepared around the world according to their traditions, especially for Ramzan.
Here are just eight beloved meals prepared by some Muslims around the globe at their Ramadan evening meal, commonly known as iftar:
A popular street food in the cities of Bangladesh throughout the year, beguni is a Ramadan staple in many Bengali households throughout the Indian subcontinent.
In Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population, iftar is called buka puasa, which means “to open the fast.” A buaka puasa favorite is a dessert called kolak.
3. Rooh Afza
As you may expect, Indian and Pakistani Muslims find Ramadan to be the perfect excuse to eat even more samosas, pakoras, and chaat. But one thing on the table that is quintessentially Ramzan, as it’s commonly referred to in South Asia, is Rooh Afza.
Güllaç is a popular Ramadan dessert in Turkey. Its name means “food with roses”, and while the dish can contain rose syrup, it is a reference to how the layers of the dish look like rose leaves.
Moroccan and Algerian Muslims traditionally break their fast with harira, a soup meant to prepare the empty stomach for a bigger dinner.
6. Shahan ful
Shahan ful, or ful, is a popular food in Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and other parts of the Horn of Africa. A breakfast food, shahan ful is more often eaten for the morning Ramadan meal, known as suhoor.
Widely believed to have been a favorite of the Prophet Muhammad, harees, also known as jareesh, is commonly eaten at iftar in the Arabian Peninsula and the Levant. It is also thought to be the origin of haleem.
8. Bean pie
Like Islam in America itself, the bean pie’s roots lie in the black Muslim community. In the words of Imam Johari Abdul-Malik of the D.C. area’s Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center: “If you have never had bean pie, you have not had an authentic American-Muslim experience.”
With 1.8 billion Muslims on the planet, these eight dishes are just a drop in the bucket of a wide variety of Ramadan culinary tradition. If you’re fasting and, therefore, salivating over these photos, why not try out a recipe from another country for iftar? While traditions are one of the things we look forward to the most on holidays, it doesn’t hurt to try out someone else’s. Your taste buds will thank you.