With the holy month upon us, it’s time to reflect, share and celebrate the traditions of this special region. Take a look at eight activities you can take up this Ramadan:
You can shop with peace of mind at Spinneys, where every store is filled with high-quality produce to reflect Spinneys’ stance on sustainability. This means meat that’s free from added hormones, and fruit and vegetables from farmers with good agricultural practices. You’ll also find recycling boxes for used household batteries and mobile phones, allowing you to do your bit for the environment.
HOST AN IFTAR
Even if you’re not fasting, iftar is a lovely opportunity to cook for friends and family and really embrace spending time together. From child-friendly shish tawook to gorgeous slow-simmered lamb tagine and a delicious twist on umm ali, we’ve got plenty of ideas for you.
TRY FASTING FOR A DAY
If you can, show solidarity with Muslim friends and colleagues by fasting for a day – they will appreciate the gesture and it will give your digestive system a little break, something that can be beneficial for health. Fasting will also improve your understanding of this traditional ritual.
Ramadan is a time for sharing, reflecting and giving something back to the community. So why not find out if there are any local charities that could do with occasional or regular volunteer help – you can continue this beyond Ramadan if possible. If not, why not make a donation to a favourite charity either in the UAE or worldwide?
If you’re not fasting, why not view this as an opportunity to forgo the take away or your usual café haunt (which may well be closed anyway), and instead make a nutritious, easy-to-put together, budget-friendly packed lunch. Our favourite quick fixes and light, fresh ideas include chilled bean soup, a pearl barley salad and speedy smoked mackerel pitta breads.
SAMPLE SOMETHING NEW
Even if you don’t consider yourself to be particularly confident in the kitchen, you can still entertain without stress this Ramadan. Created by our team of in-house chefs to give you a restaurant-quality dining experience at home, our easy-to-cook range combines traditional Arabic flavours with modern execution – think lamb leg filled with mint, garlic, herb and sumac stuffing.
EMBARK ON A PROJECT
Reduced working hours should give us all a bit more time to spend in the kitchen, so it may be a good opportunity to cook something a little bit more complicated than usual. Our step-by-step recipes for Middle Eastern-inspired orange and vanilla baklava, lamb kefta tagine with artichokes and eggs and labneh cheesecake with honey, nuts and figs will guide you through.
MAKE A HOMEMADE GIFT
Presenting your iftar host with a homemade gift is a lovely touch. Chocolate bark not only looks beautiful, but it’s really easy to make too, while mini treasure boxes filled with dried fruit, dates, chocolates and sweets take moments to put together but feel special. Plump chewy dates dipped in melted dark chocolate and coated with desiccated coconut, chopped pistachios and sesame seeds are also lovely served with coffee after iftar.