The Holy Month of Ramadan is fast approaching. Muslims around the globe will be observing Ramadan from a variety of countries and cultures. Though Ramadan is a time to exercise self-restrain, think about others who are less fortunate and don’t have food, remember those who are suffering, a major part of Ramadan days, like any other holidays, evolves around food. Browse though our Ramadan make ahead item that you can prep before the holy month arrives. Also, don’t forget to visit the Celebrate Ramadan page for more great Ramadan ideas.
Ramadan fasting is about getting close to God(Allah swt), and prayers, and good deeds. From among these righteous deeds is the feeding of the fasting person with numerous rewards for this act. As Muslims, we are rewarded for our duties towards the family – be it cleaning, cooking or running any other chores. Through this sense of responsibility, many types of food will be prepared in the kitchen for the pre-dawn meal(suhoor/suhur) and for breaking the fast(iftar). However, it is always best to prepare a few items ahead of time to save time during the holy month for extra prayers. With a little lifting now, before Ramadan starts, there will be plenty of time to focus on prayers as it should be the goal of the month.
Here’s my top 9 items that I make sure I have stocked before the holy month to save time on cleaning and meal preparation during Ramadan.
My husband and I usually do not eat much for suhur/suhoor or the pre-dawn meal. We usually have a cup of milk and some water. However, since the summer Ramadan days are almost 15 hours long, we try to have some light breakfast items. The flavorful granola is healthy, nutritious, and filling. It takes only minutes to make a batch and stores very well in airtight container.
The hand pies and samosa can double duty as iftar and suhoor, so there is no reason to not make them ahead of time for a stress free meal preparation during the holy month. Both of these are my favorite to serve at iftar parties and take along for potluck iftar. For both of these appetizing recipes, the filling choices are endless. Feel free to customize the filling per your family’s taste preference.
Meat balls of any kind freezes very well. I always like to keep some flavor variation of meatballs in the freezer. They are so versatile. I can transform simple meatballs to curry or korma, pop them in our favorite soups, add to noodles or pasta for a quick Ramadan meal. I freeze them individually in a tray and once frozen, toss them in a ziplock bag. When it is time to prepare a meal or snack, I take them out of the freezer. For some recipes, I thaw. For soups and few other recipes, I just toss them in the broth or gravy and let cook.
Kafta Mishwiyyeh, the Lebanese Meatballs can be thawed and heated and served with bread and your favorite dip. I like to serve them with muhammara, a Middle Eastern Red pepper dip. I have some ground meat being thawed as I write this post. Gotta have some pre-made koftas for few days of Iftar.
Just like koftas, shami kababs freeze exceptionally beautifully! After making the flat shaped kababs, I individually freeze them in a flat plate or tray and later store them in ziplock bags in the freezer. If you are following my recipe, when you want to fry, do not thaw. Just coat them in beaten egg and fry the delightful kababs in hot oil.
Soups are great for breaking the fast. Soups provide the essential nutrient and hydrate the body after a long day of fasting. If you do not have access to halal broth, this easy flavorful broth is the way to go. You can thank me later!
Ghugni or curried chickpeas is a must for every Bangladeshi home to break the fast. I serve this delicious protein rich ghugni atleast 4 times a week during Ramadan. To make the preparation and cleanup easy, I boil a large batch and freeze in portions. Every 3-4 days, I take out a portion and make the ghugni with the tender brown chickpeas for, you guessed right, 3-4 days.
Another great vegetarian option for Ramadan is plantain patties. They are unique and great alternative to the ever so popular alu tikki or “alur chop” made of plantain instead of potato. They are great as is or inside a burger bun.
For more great Ramadan articles, visit our Celebrate Ramadan page.
What other items would you add to this list? Bring on the ideas and let me know in the comment to help each other to reap the most benefit of Ramadan.
Also, have you entered the Ramadan Giveaway yet? If not, there is still plenty of time to win! Find out how to enter and increase your chances of winning.