Post Ramadan Post

Posted on August 26, 2012

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The entire month of Ramadan has passed by and I never managed to publish a post about this very culinarily charged period.  For those of you who don’t know, the month of Ramadan is observed by Muslims with daily fasting.  Because the timing of Muslim holidays is calculated using a lunar calendar, the date that Ramadan begins shifts backwards each year by about 11 days.  For many years now, Ramadan has fallen during the hottest summer season.

holiday cookies waiting to be baked

Fasting in this region’s brutal heat is no easy undertaking – particularly for 30 long sweltering days.  Yet several of my Muslim friends have told me that they wait all year long for this holy month, despite the hardship.  One day, when Balkees was complaining how exhausted she felt, I asked her about the seeming paradox.  Just the opportunity to answer my question seemed to pep her up.

Ramadan is a month full of her* she told me.  Her in Arabic translates to goodness.  You use the word her when saying good morning or good evening.  But her also signifies abundance and wellbeing.  During Ramadan, Balkees explained, the whole family sits together every evening for the break-the-fast dinner and it doesn’t matter what you serve, there is always enough and no one complains.

Sometimes you need to take away what you take for granted to appreciate what you have.  And in Balkees’ house, there is no shortage of her.

 *pronounced like “hair” from the back of the throat

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Posted in: nazareth, ramadan