Ramadan to me is the most favorite month of the year! There is a feeling of satisfaction and unending gratitude. It is the month we long for all year round and when it finally arrives, the days and nights pass which is actually a month-long, pass as if it just began a week ago. It is the season of abundance and Almighty has blessed the believers with such rewards that you wish it was Ramadan whole year round.
As Ramadan is followed by the lunar Islamic calendar, it falls ten to 11 days earlier than the previous year. It has been in severe summer conditions for the past few years in Doha and hydration is the key element to be focused while fasting for more than 15 hours in extreme climatic conditions. I have immense respect for the workers who fast considering the harsh working conditions. May Almighty reward you with the highest decree in Jannah. Aameen.
Cooking during Ramadan is a thing were kids are concerned. You make delectable snacks as a reward for encouraging the children to fast and enjoy delicacies during Ifthar. As we are two adults at home now, indulgence is in fruits and juice. My family thinks I am boring to not prepare fried food but we love our fruits and a main course which is eaten at night. No, I don’t loose weight but I have a lot of energy to get me through each night. Thanks to the dates and laban, we feel full and energized to tackle the fasting hours.
Even though water is my favorite drink of choice, nothing can beat a good sweet drink. It’s the easiest way to restore electrolytes in your system and take you from being lethargic to active in a matter of minutes. The daily night prayers during Ramadan is another element that keeps the believers active and content during the Holy month.
Since I started Food Blogging I am trying to come up with easy Halal options as I have many amazing readers who are from the West and its hard for them to find Halal food and drinks everywhere. You know my adventurous mind when it comes to creating recipes! This particular post is a result of ten different trials to create five exotic drinks that I bet you would love. I have not added soda as I firmly believe that is not something you should consume while breaking your fast. These are five easy to gulp down, refreshing and energizing drinks that could even make your guests go WOW!
I hope you enjoyed the long intro, so lets come to the recipes. I have completely created all the five drinks from scratch and would love you to try it out. To add to the punch I have added floral notes to the fruity concoctions that I carefully brewed. Let me be honest, I had to wash like a hundred dishes and the mess from the photoshoot was driving me mad. Pureeing the fruits, crushing lemons and the decorations all made me want to hide and think that everything would be cleaned magically like in the “Elves and the Shoemaker”. The cleanup afterwards is always brutal and I ended up stuffing myself with fruits! But even before this was actually over, I have a new dish in mind which I am perfecting the recipe of!
<<<<<<<<<<< SIMPLE SYRUP >>>>>>>>>>>>
The base of all the five drinks is a simple syrup. A syrup that is just sugar and water boiled and cooled. So a typical recipe would be one part sugar and one part water boiled until the sugar dissolves and allowed to simmer for five minutes. Take off the flame and allow to cool in a refrigerator.
A lemonade is everyone’s favorite be it for summer or Ramadan. Rose flower is a celebrated food ingredient in the Middle East and Arab world. There is no other drink that comes to close to the fame of a lemonade during Ifthar. A touch of Rose flower essence gives the lemonade an exotic feel and makes it gentler on the stomach by cutting down the acidity.
For Rose Essence
Rose petals – 1 cup
Water – 1 cup
Boil the petals in water and strain when 1/4th of the water is left behind and the water is tinted with a light pink hue.
Simple syrup – 1/2 cup
Lemon juice – 2 tbsp
Rose essence – 1/4 cup
Mint leaves and crushed ice
Combine all the ingredients except mint leaves and ice and cool in a refrigerator. Add crushed ice and mint leaves when serving.
PINEAPPLE CARAMEL COOLER
I tried recreating this drink from an event that I went to recently. The drink was served in Champagne glass and the fizz was from Sprite. I just loved how amazing it tasted and the one little strawberry in a glass did impart an acidity to the sweet concoction. So here is my recipe, you can use Sprite if you want it fizzy, adjust caramel to your desired sweetness. I have used Sparkling water.
Pineapple juice – 1/4 cup
Apple juice – 1/4 cup
Caramel syrup – 2 tbsp
Simple syrup – 1 tbsp
Strawberries – one cut into 4 wedges
Crushed ice – (I froze sparkling water for this one)
Combine the Pineapple juice, apple juice, caramel and sparkling water. Mix well until the color is a9 yellow orange. Adjust the sweetness using simple syrup as needed. Add in a small slice of strawberry per glass and crushed ice while serving. Cool and enjoy.
Oranges, mandarins and grapefruit together with mint is the WINNER. I am not a big fan of lemon mint, but this drink is my favorite among the five recipes. Sweet, citric and fresh, a sip of this will make you appreciate the goodness of what mint leaves exist for!
Orange – 1
Mandarin – 2
Grapefruit – half of a grapefruit
Mint leaves – a handful
Simple syrup – 1/3 cup
Add the fresh fruits to the blender and blend until the fruits are pureed. Strain the juice and keep aside.
Add some water to the mint leaves and crush them in the blender once again. Strain and add this to the citrus juice mix. Add simple syrup to the desired sweetness and serve cold with ice.
ALMOND COCO DATE
Who doesn’t love coconut milk? It is the best milk nature has to give to humanity. Don’t ya agree? Almonds, coconuts and dates were put to test in my kitchen lab and the result was I couldn’t stop sipping into this milky goodness. I am not a cow’s milk fan but Almond and coconut milk is another story. I could drink coconut milk everyday of my life if the process of extracting milk from shredded coconuts was simple! So here is the recipe
Coconut milk – 1/2 cup
Almond milk – 1/3 cup
Dates syrup – 2 to 3 tbsp
Water from a coconut
Soak a handful of almonds overnight or for 15 minutes in hot water. In a blender add the coconut water and soaked almonds to make a drink of its own! Strain this goodness.
Add date syrup to the above and stir through the coconut milk. Serve with ice cubes made of frozen coconut water. The flavor is rich and this makes for a real party pleaser. Be sure to be stocked up with plenty of coconut goodness.
FRUITY ICED TEA
I do not have a taste bud for tea. My favorite tea would be Camomile with honey and I always drink it hot and when I am sick. I am not a fan of Iced tea but I have a friend who goes crazy over Iced tea and her approving this drink is victory! This is packed with fruity goodness with a slight hint of tea. I would suggest serving this to tea lovers as it would be perfect for them to sip on their favorite beverage. Let’s move to the recipe,
Plum – 1
Apricot – 1
Green grapes – a tiny bunch
Cherry – 3 to 4
Lightly brewed Tea – 1/2 cup
Simple syrup – 1/4 cup
Crushed ice and frozen grapes
▪ Lightly brew your tea without sugar.
▪ Blend the fruits together and strain the juice. Add some cold water to thin it out.
▪ Mix the juice to the tea and add simple syrup until your desired sweetness. Serve with crushed ice and frozen grapes.
Try them out and let me know in comments below if you like it. I hope that you learn something new from my recipes. Happy Ramadan!😍😙