Saturday, July 05, 2014

Ramadan 2014 – Day 5-6, Ramadan Meals

During the last couple of days I was invited to some iftar and sohour meals. Aside from that you should break it fast with dates there is no set menu for any of these meals. For example I celebrated iftar at my Turkish friend's house. Here's what our Iftar meal was:

Dates (of course), water, a vegetable salad in a tomato sauce, and a pasta salad in a spicy tomato sauce (it appears that Turks really like tomatoes). Turkish coffee and tea with biscuits to finish.

On the table was a small white jug with a red cap. It contained Zamzam water that my friend brought back with him from Mecca, and we each took a small glass of that to break our fast.

But if you want to do something more lavish you could do an iftar or sohour at one of the 5-star hotels. I met up with some of my Qatari friends to have sohour at the Ritz-Carleton.

Most hotels set up elaborate “Ramadan Tents” but in most cases it's not actually a tent but the ballroom. Some places go all out with the decorations to make it look like a lavish tent. The Ritz had a live band as well as a whirling dervish dancer, common entertainment at hotel sohours. The banquet was of course huge, with a sushi station, pasta station, meats, wide array or desserts, etc.

Unfortunately you really have to be careful at these sorts of things if you've been fasting. It puts a lot of strain on your stomach to go from not eating or drinking all day to suddenly gorging yourself. My problem is when I break my fast I'm so hungry I will eat almost everything around so I try to make sure that my meals are a reasonable size so that I don't go overboard. Sure enough, I wound up with a terrible stomach ache and once I got home I had to lay down for the rest of the evening, which meant I couldn't eat anything at dawn, which meant an even longer fast. Not the wisest thing I’ve done. Of course I’m not the only one, overeating is a common problem this time of year.

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