The holy month of Ramadan is an opportunity to try out delicacies that will add delightful color and variety to the iftar table.
Rabat – During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims worldwide look forward to breaking their fast in an iftar meal directly after sunset, featuring a favored variety of foods, pastries, and drinks.
Ramadan is considered the most sacred month for Muslims. It should be a time of spiritual discipline, deep contemplation of one’s relationship with God, extra prayer, increased charity and generosity, and intense study of the Quran.
It is also a time for celebration, joy, and spending time with loved ones. One great way to achieve that is to break the fast over the iftar table with communal meals.
Many Moroccan women tend to be especially active and innovative in the kitchen during this holy month, spending their free time looking up new recipes to try or inventing new meals from scratch. Some of the country’s most beloved iftar dishes follow.
Also called “assida” or “hssoua,” this delicious and quick-to-make soup that Moroccans usually drink for breakfast is a perfect dish for iftar. It is light on the stomach and provides energy-packed carbohydrates. Semolina soup also contains nutrients such as iron, magnesium, and vitamin B-complex.
It is an easy dish that takes mere minutes to make. Semolina, salt, and water are mixed together, cooked, and served warm with some olive oil or honey, depending on the individual’s preference.
Mihmih is a puff pastry originally from Figuig, in southeastern Morocco. It is a compound of thin round sheets of dough–“mssemen” or “batbout”–alternated with a mixture of herbs and spices and vegetables and sometimes filled with minced meat.
Many Moroccans enjoy this delicious dish which is filling and nutrient-packed to give the body much-needed strength after a day of fasting. Mihmih can be served for iftar as well as for sehour, the meal before sunrise.
Zemita resembles “sfouf” or Moroccan “sellou,” but its ingredients are completely different. Zemita’s preparation requires some extra work, but it is definitely worth it.
The dish is a mix of many healthy ingredients such as sesame seeds, nuts, almonds, flax seeds, barley, beans, corn, chickpeas, watermelon seeds, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, melon seeds, and more. These hearty ingredients are crunched up separately, mixed together with olive oil and honey, and served with sesame seeds or almonds on top.
Fried Mashed Potato Balls
Maaqouda is a quick and delicious dish to add to the iftar table. Its principal ingredient is mashed potatoes, accompanied by eggs, cheese, and dry bread crumbs. After combining the base ingredients, you must coat the balls with milk and eggs and cover them in dry bread crumbs. You can either bake them in the oven or fry them in vegetable oil.
The dish is an ideal mix of crunchy and soft for a fun and tasty iftar meal, and can also be served as a complementary dish in sehour.
Moroccans are famous for using eggplant in many recipes. It is baked, fried, or mixed with other vegetables in “zaalouk.” This salad is formed into balls with cheese as a perfect side dish for a diverse and colorful iftar table that will bring joy to everyone in the family.
All you need is fresh eggplant, chopped up into small pieces, and fried with onion and other spices. The vegetable mixture is then combined with eggs, dried parsley, and bread crumbs until it reaches a thick consistency. Next, you can roll it into balls and stuff each one with a small amount of cheese. After that, you simply fry them in hot vegetable oil.
Moroccan Avocado Milkshake
It is important to ingest a significant volume of liquids between iftar and sehour after abstaining from food and drink all day so that your body can restore its energy and prepare for the next day’s fasting.
It is not advisable to drink water right after breaking the fast as it could cause health complications. It is better to start with solid, sugary food and opt for healthy juices or smoothies during iftar.
The avocado milkshake is famous in Morocco. It is the perfect smoothie for iftar because it is filling, nutritious, and easy to make. You will need to blend avocados and milk and add sugar (to taste).