Contrary to what might be popular belief, not every Muslim family is a large one. There are people all over the world, especially in the U.S. who live far away from extended family whether overseas or across the country. There are those new to Islam who will be breaking the fast alone or with just one other person (i.e. couples, students, singles, etc.) during Ramadan.
If you’re one of those people, why not make iftar special (without all the fuss), even if it’s a small one?
If you’re a college student, a busy single or a family of two, it doesn’t mean that you have to go to great lengths to put out an elaborate spread of food on the table just because it’s Ramadan. Waste is not the objective, and either is any fuss. Who has time for that?
Iftar is just as important as any other meal of the non-fasting day, so it should be healthy, no matter the size.
So how do you get a healthy, no-fuss meal on the table that fits your busy schedule—and make it feel special?
Here are a few tips:
• Treat the meal as the special event that it is.
• Set the table (or desk) with your best dinnerware and nice napkins, if you have them
• Set out the dates and water.
• Make yourself a nice healthy drink to go with your meal (recipe below)
No stove to cook in?
Saffron Road halal entrees are so convenient for these types of meals and for people who just don’t have the time or opportunity to cook a full meal, especially those who want to make the most out of the rest of the night in prayer and worship—or, because they simply need to work or study.
You can do this in a dorm or at the office microwave, something late-night students, hospital workers or those stuck at the office can really appreciate.
One of my favorite entrees is the Saffron Road Chicken Tikka Masala because it’s got the perfect kick of spice without over-doing it, which can be especially important during the first real meal after fasting.
Most simple kitchens have some sort of blender around. Pick seasonal fruits such as strawberries and cherries to make this beautiful, refreshing summer drink to go with your meal. I love how the cool fruit tastes after eating a flavor-packed meal found in the Indian, Moroccan or Thai entrees from Saffron Road. Actually, this drink would go great with any of them.
I love fresh seasonal Bing cherries in homemade drinks. You can find them in the summer at many local farmers marekts. Just be sure they’re grown without the use of pesticides.
Cherry pitters are best for this job, otherwise you end up with juice sprayed everywhere
Place ice then raw sugar (turbinado) in blender. Place fresh fruit on top.
Beautiful Pitted Bing Cherries
Cherry-Strawberry Frozen Juice
Makes 4 cups
1 cup ice (shaved or cubed)
2 tablespoons raw cane sugar (turbinado)
2 cups pitted cherries plus any juice that comes from pitting them
1 cup strawberries
1/2 cup warm water
1 tablespoon almond syrup
Use a powerful blender to make this drink, if you have one. If you have one that has a difficult time crushing up the ice, add a bit more warm water to the ice than called for in the recipe.
Place the ice at the bottom of the blender.
Add the sugar, then the cherries and strawberries on top.
Add the warm water and blend for 30 seconds.
Add the almond syrup and blend again for another 30 seconds.