Iftar cuisine during ramadan in Bangladesh
Iftar cuisine during ramadan in Bangladesh
A meal served at the end of the day during Ramadan, to break the day’s fast is known as Iftar or Iftaar. Narrated Anas (R): “The Messenger of Allah, (May Allah honour Him and grant Him peace) used to break his fast before offering Maghrib Prayer with some fresh dates, but if there were no fresh dates, he would take a few dry dates and if there were no dry dates he would take a few drops of water.” Sunan Abu Dawud 2348 and 2349, Tirmidhi 3:79 Riyad as-Salihin1238 and 1239.
Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. During the whole month, Muslims fast from Sehri to Iftar. During the fast, no food or drink is consumed and thoughts must be kept pure. Followers of Islam believe that fasting helps the Muslims develop patience, modesty, spirituality and understand the pain of hunger. At the end of the day of fasting in the name of Allah, muslims take food and beverages during iftar.
Bangladesh is a muslim majority country where as islamic heritage Iftar is one of the religious observances of Ramadan and is often done as a community, with people gathering to break their fast together or as Iftar Party. People like to have iftar at home with all family members and iftar parties are also arranged by mosques. Iftar is taken right after Maghrib time, which is after sunset. Muslims believe that feeding someone at iftar as a form of charity is very rewarding and that such was practised by the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam).
In Bangladesh, a wide variety of foods items is prepared to take during Iftar. Some of the common iftar items from Bangladeshi cuisine include Shorbot (Lemonade, Milk Shake, Smoothie, Juice, Rooh Afza, Lachhi), Piyajoo, Beguni, Chhanar Jolapi, Jilapi, Bundia, Cabbage Pakora, Cauliflower Pakora, Egg chops, Potato Chop, Chicken Chops, Chicken roll, Chicken Nugget, Chicken wings, Chicken Fry, French Toast, Spring roll, Vegetable cutlet, Vegetable Pakora, Ghugni, Meat Kabab, Muri, Halim, dates, samosas, Dal Puri, Chola, fish kabab, mughlai paratha, pitha, Doi Bora, Doi chira, Tok Doi (Plain Yogurt), Misty Doi (Sweet Yogurt), Patishapta pitha, Falooda, Kalozam Sweets, Rosh malai, Sponge Rosogolla, traditional Bengali sweets and different types of fruits and Fruit Juices such as watermelon, papaya, mango, pineapple.
Some iftar items from other Muslim countries cuisine are now added newly with some modification to our modern iftar culture such as Ramazan Kebabi ( from Turkey), Paomo (from china), Kolak ( from Indonesia), Konafah (Middle Eastern Countries), Shashlik (from Thailand/ china), Chicken Sharma (from Turkey), Chicken-kabsa ( arabian-biriyani), Hydrabadi chicken-biriyani (Indian).
In different cities of Bangladesh, it is a common scenario that traders are busy to prepare traditional iftar items in front of different markets, mosques, and intersections. They sell iftar items in front of their shops by putting a table. There are some famous places in Dhaka city having diversity of traditional Iftar. Chawkbazar is the biggest Iftar market of Dhaka. It has been offering iftar to the Dhaka dwellers for over 400 years. The tradition and reputation of Chawkbazar’s ifter items are well known to the city dwellers and has turned into an iftar focal point for the Dhaka residents. People from different parts of the city come here to buy special iftar menu. some of these iftar items are originated in the Mughal era such as mutton and chicken roast, Kacchi Biriyani, shuti kabab, Shami Kabab, Boti Kabab, Reshmi Kabab, Sheek Kabab, shahi doi bora, mutton and chicken cutlet, kima roll, kima parata, doi bora, borhani, mattha etc. ‘Boro Baper Polay Khay’, five-foot long shik kabab and giant shahi jilapi are some popular and special iftar item of Chawkbazar.
Bailey Road is another recognized iftar bazaar in Dhaka city. It has become very popular as it offers new items in every Ramadan. Many believe that Bailey Road iftar market is the pioneer of selling iftar items in modern format in shops, which makes it easier for customers to choose and buy iftar items.
For few years, International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB) organize iftar market for the inhabitant of new Dhaka during Ramadan aims to make old Dhaka’s iftar dishes available. Many popular caterer from old Dhaka like Nanna Biriyani, Hazi Biriyani, Tehari, Tandoori Chicken. Star Kabab brings their famous dishes like Mutton leg roast in the festival. Almost every item of modern and traditional iftar dishes are available at the event.
Nandoos, KFC and Pizza Hut offer special menu and price on Iftar during Ramadan. Most of the renown restaurant of the town arrange special iftar to the customer. All buffet restaurant offer special dinner following Iftar.
Sometimes the iftar items those prepare and sell in open place and street are not healthy. They do not maintain hygienic condition and prepare from safe raw materials. Some of them use unauthorized textile color and unpermitted flavor to attract the customer. They repeatedly fry iftar dishes in used low quality soybean or palm oil which are very harmful for health. The unhygienic places where the iftar items are cooked are filled with germs that can cause diarrhoea and typhoid fever.
Most of the families of Bangladesh prepare the traditional iftar dishes by their own in kitchen according to their family member’s choice. This culture of iftar item preparation is varying from region to region of the country. But the common dishes are ghugni, piyaju, Potato chop, chola fry, jilapy, vegetable pakora, sweets and different type shorbot/ drinks or juice. Iftar items are shared as gift among the neighbor during the Ramadan by most of the families. This culture brings them closer and makes strong bonding between them.