For those who are practicing Ramadan this year, some of you may fast with relative ease and others may struggle with issues such as hunger and dehydration. When done correctly, fasting can be quite good for your health. As long as you know what you’re doing, eating correctly and getting your nutrients in, you won’t have a problem.
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One of the ways to improve your fast, as well as your mood, is having a dessert during iftar. A sweet dessert shared with the whole family during Ramadan has become almost customary within the culture.
The most important thing is getting your essential nutrients in with your main meals, but it doesn’t hurt to treat yourself with a sweet Ramadan dessert.
Here are the 7 easy to prepare and delicious desserts to have this Ramadan.
1. Umm Ali
This dessert is perhaps one of the most favorite desserts in all of the middle east. Originating in Egypt and named after the mother of Ali, this middle eastern delicacy dates back to the Ayyubid dynasty.
This dessert is a staple in most Egyptian households and a favorite dessert to all people with a sweet tooth during Ramadan. It is made with phyllo pastry, milk, cream, and topped off with nuts, raisins, and coconuts. Aesthetically it looks like a bread pudding and can be served either warm or at room temperature.
Baklava is one of the middle eastern desserts that has found popularity all over the world. What makes it a typical Ramadan dessert is that it’s sweet, crunchy and perfect as a post-dinner treat.
Originating from the Ottoman Empire, baklava is a staple in most homes practicing Ramadan, particularly in Greece, Turkey, Albania, Bulgaria, and Cyrpus. You can make Baklava at home, or you can buy it at most specialty stores during Ramadan.
Like Umm Ali, it is made from phyllo pastry, made with several layers, chopped up nuts or almonds, then drizzled or coated with honey or sweet syrup.
One of the easiest desserts to prepare during Ramadan, Fakhdakhina is your typical fruit salad topped with ice cream. This dessert can be made in a bowl or cup, along with fruit cocktails and may also be served as a drink.
The fruit options are up to you, and how what type of ice cream and fruit juices you use are up to your discretion.
Bastani is a type of ice cream that is common in the middle east. Originating from Persia, bastani is made from eggs, sugar, vanilla essence, pistachios, milk, saffron and rose water, similar to a sorbet, it is light and served chilled.
In most households during Ramadan, bastani can be served with a drizzle of honey as well as ice cream sandwiches made with waffles.
Feteer, or feteer Meshaltet, is a pastry type dessert that resembles baklava. Originating from ancient Egypt, it is believed that feteer was an offering to the gods.
It is light in weight, thin in texture and served with jam, cheese, icing sugar, honey, and other condiments. Feteer is popular during Ramadan as it is quick and easy to prepare, and goes well with other sweet treats. Feteer is also commonly served with meats for iftar or suhoor.
Qatayef is an Arabic pancake and similar to with feteer, can be served with whatever you like. Nuts, almonds, cheese, pudding and ice cream, are often ideal foods that go well with qatayef.
A common tradition when serving qatayef is to soak it in sugar syrup before serving. During Ramadan, this delicacy can be served as a post iftar dessert or a quick and sweet suhoor snack.
7. Halawat El Jibn
Originating from Lebanon, This dish is made using thin layers of phyllo pastry and rolled with cheese and thick cream that resembles custard. It is served with a drizzle of rose water or sugar syrup. Most people like to finish topping it up with slices pistachios and cherries.
Please take note of how much sugar you’re consuming as most middle eastern desserts can be quite sweet and contain high counts of natural and processed sugars.
If you aren’t sure about what you should or eat during this Ramadan, its best to speak with your medical practitioner or professional dietician for the best advice.
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