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Ramadan Recipes
June 5, 2016, 12:42 pm

Traditionally, the Ramadan fast is broken with the consumption of a few dates and some water, but this is not mandatory. In places where dates are not easily available, people compensate with other traditional sugary delights. Here are a few recipes that you could try out this Ramadan.


Kanafa is a Middle Eastern dessert consisting of a base layer of cheese mixed with milk or semolina topped off with a crispy layer of dried noodles and syrup.


450g Shredded phyllo dough  

450g Ricotta cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1/3 cup white sugar

360g unsalted butter

For the syrup:

1 cup white sugar

½ cup water

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/8 teaspoon rose water (optional)


Preheat an oven to 200 degrees C.

Use a food processor to finely chop the frozen, shredded phyllo dough. The strands should be about the size of a grain of rice. Pour the dough into a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta, mozzarella, and 1/3 cup sugar.

Place the butter in a large liquid measuring cup or bowl with a spout. Heat the butter in a microwave until completely melted, and let it sit for several minutes until thick white foam has formed on top. Clarify the butter by using a spoon to skim off the foam.

Carefully pour the butter into the bowl of phyllo dough. Avoid pouring in the white milk solids at the bottom of the clarified butter. Use your hands to mix the butter and dough together. Make sure that the butter is absorbed by taking handfuls of the dough and rubbing it between your palms.

Evenly spread the buttered phyllo dough into a 22 x  33cm pan and firmly press it into the bottom and edges. Spread the cheese mixture onto the dough, avoiding the edges of the pan.

Bake in the preheated oven until the cheese is slightly golden and the edges of dough are brown and bubbly, 30 to 35 minutes.

While the kanafa is baking, prepare the syrup. Combine the water and 1/2 cup sugar in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the lemon juice. Simmer, stirring constantly, until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and add the rose water; set aside.

Remove the kanafa from the oven. Place a large platter or baking sheet over the baking dish. Using oven mitts, carefully invert the baking dish onto the platter so the phyllo is on top. Pour the syrup over the kanafa. Cut into pieces and serve while hot.


Mujudarra is a traditional Middle Eastern dish made with lentils and caramelized onions.


6 tablespoons olive oil

1 large white onion, sliced into rings

1 1/13 cups uncooked green lentils

¾ uncooked long-grain white rice

Salt and pepper to taste

¼ cup plain yogurt or sour cream (optional)


Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onions, and cook about 10 minutes, until browned. Remove from heat, and set aside.

Place lentils in a medium saucepan with enough lightly salted water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer about 15 minutes.

Stir rice and enough water to cover into the saucepan with the lentils. Season with salt and pepper. Cover saucepan, and continue to simmer 15 to 20 minutes, until rice and lentils are tender.

Mix half the onions into the lentil mixture. Top with yogurt or sour cream and remaining onions to serve.

Badam Sherbet


2 cup milk

2 tablespoons heavy cream

I cup Finely ground almonds (badam)

½ cup Confectioners’ sugar

2 tablespoons Rose water (2 tablespoons)


Mix the milk, almonds, confectioners’ sugar, and rose water in a food processor. Mix together for approximately one minute, until thoroughly mixed and smooth.


3/4 cup Dry chickpeas
1/4 cup Dried soybeans
1 bay leaf
1 onion (quartered)
1 cup Vegetable broth
3 cups Water
2 cloves Crushed garlic
1 Fresh lemon 
2 tablespoon Soy sauce
Black pepper to taste
¼ cup Tahini (Sesame seed oil)
¼ cup Chopped fresh parsley

Wash the garbanzos and soybeans properly. Put garbanzos and soybeans in a pressure cooker along with the bay leaf and onion. Add vegetable broth and sufficient water to cover the beans (check once the manufacturer's instructions for the minimum requisite amount of liquid). 

Cover the saucepan with the lid and bring the pressure up to high. Then reduce the heat to the lower level and cook for 1 hour, maintaining high pressure. Allow the pressure to go down naturally. 

Drain the beans but reserve the liquid. Put the beans in a food processor. Add the garlic, lemon juice, soy sauce, black pepper, and tahini and process the mixture until it is smooth. You may also include some of the cooking liquid for a thinner consistency according to your need. Transfer to a bowl and sprinkle with a topping of parsley.

Channa Masala


1½ cups white chickpeas (Channa)

4 cups water

1 tsp salt

For the ground masala paste:

 5 dry chillies

5 tomatoes

1½ inch ginger

6-7 garlic cloves

2 tbsp coriander seeds

¼ tsp garam masala powder

2 green chilies, chopped vertically into 4 pieces

2 tbsp oil

1 cup of water

A few coriander leaves for garnish

Slices of onion, lemon and ginger julienne for garnish

Salt or black salt


Wash the chickpeas thoroughly in water and then soak them overnight or for 8-9 hours.

Boil the chickpeas with some salt in a pressure cooker or a covered pan with enough water.

Drain and keep aside.

Wash the tomatoes and chop them.

Peel the garlic and ginger and chop them roughly.

In a mixer or blender, add the tomatoes, ginger, garlic, dry red chilies and coriander seeds

Grind or blend to a smooth paste.

Heat oil in a pan and add the ground paste.

Fry the masala paste for 7-8 minutes in oil till the raw smell of the tomatoes, ginger and

garlic disappears and the oil leaves the sides of the masala

Now add the green chillies and 1 cup of water.

Stir and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Add the boiled channa.

Mix the channa with the rest of the masala.

Let the channa masala simmer for 15-20 minutes on a low flame. keep on stirring in between.

Add the garam masala powder and salt and mix with the rest of the channa masala.

Cook for 1-2 minutes more.

Lastly add chopped coriander leaves to channa masala for garnishing.

Serve with slices of onion, lemon wedges and ginger julienne along with pooris, naan, bhature bread or steamed rice.

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