The holiest month on the Islamic calendar is here. Every year Ramzan witnesses millions of followers across the world partaking in what is called roza, the period of fasting. According to the Islamic tradition, the basic purpose behind keeping a roza is to instill a sense of self restraint in oneself. A typical day for the one who keeps a roza starts before dawn with a lavish meal (known as suhoor or sehri), and once the sun rises, he or she follows a strict fast until sun down, when after the evening prayer, the fast is broken and everyone get together to enjoy the Iftar feast.
The Iftar feast is literally a celebration of good food – a day-long restrain culminated into an unbridled indulgence of mouthwatering delicacies. Traditionally, one is supposed to break the roza with dates as it is believed that Prophet Mohammad also broke his fast by eating three dates.
A traditional Iftar spread is a gastronomic extravaganza; from meticulously prepared meat curries to decadent desserts, refreshing sherbets and much more. What’s offered on the table is usually more than enough to satiate the hunger of the entire family. A traditional Iftar menu can be described as nothing short of spectacular with dishes like kebabs, haleem, biryani, paya, halwa,sheer khurma and phirni taking center-stage.
If you’re in Delhi and in search of an authentic Iftar feast then head to Old Delhi or Nizzamuddin. The variety of dishes laced with traditional flavours will linger on your palate for days to come. And just in case you love cooking and want to re-create traditional Iftar treats in the comfort of your own home, follow our list of 10 best Iftar recipes to put together a full-fledged menu for your family.
1. Chicken Shammi Kebab
Recipe by Chef Akhtar Rehman, Foodistan
Juicy chicken pieces are minced and mixed with channa dal and a host of masalas. Work them up into patties and fry till crisp.
2. Lahori Special Gajrella from Gawal Mandi
Recipe by Chef Muhammad Ikram, Foodistan
End your Iftar on a sweet note, this carrot-based dessert is loaded with the goodness of milk, khoya, rice and nuts.
3. Kabuli Pulao
Recipe byChef Mohammad Naeem, Foodistan
The classic rice preparation cooked along with chunky chickpeas.
4. Kaghzi kebab
Recipe by Chef Mohammad Naeem, Foodistan
Chicken drumsticks are marinated and stuffed with pine-nuts and herbs, grilled to perfection.
5. Faalsa Sherbet
Recipe by Chef Kunal Kapur
Refresh and rejuvenate by sipping on this seasonal punch.
6. Shahi Tukda
Recipe by Chef Aditya Bal
One of the star desserts of the quintessential Iftar menu.
7. Dum Biryani
Recipe by Chef Kishore D. Reddy
Mutton pieces are marinated and cooked in a mouthwatering masala. These are layered alternatively with basmati rice and cooked on dum.
8. Mutton Bhuna Gosht
Recipe byChef Muhammad Ikram, Foodistan
Mutton pieces cooked in raw papaya pasted along with the flavourful aromatics.
Recipe by Chef Neeraj Tyagi, Tamra, Shangri – La’s Eros Hotel, New Delhi
A delectable mutton preparation slow-cooked along with lentils, broken wheat and spices.
10. Sheer Khurma
Recipe by Chef Niru Gupta
A special vermicelli pudding best enjoyed during Eid and Ramzaan festivities.