What's Cooking on 1060: Ramadan Food Traditions

Hadas Kuznits
May 11, 2018 - 3:15 am
The Halal Guys

Hadas Kuznits/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- The holy month-long Muslim holiday of Ramadan begins on Tuesday, May 15. And while this is a fasting holiday during the day, there are a lot of food traditions involved.

Ramadan is the holiest month of the Muslim calendar:

"It's the ninth month and it's when the prophet Mohammed was revealed the Koran," said Naveen Mohiuddin of The Halal Guys in Philadelphia. 

He explains customarily, Muslims fast for the entire month between sunrise and sunset.

"So sunrise, the pre-meal is called Suhoor," Mohiuddin said. "That's when you stuff your face as much as you can before the sun comes up; and the Iftar is when you break fast."

And it's recommended to break the fast with family and friends.

"People are planning Iftars like two months out, like they have catering requests," Mohiuddin explained. "Even at Halal Guys we do catering."

He says at the Halal Guys, they'll also be catering to those who want to celebrate Suhoor.

"On Friday and Saturday the 18th and 19th, we are doing a late night open until 4 a.m.," he said.

It's traditional to break your fast with a date.

"So even at Halal Guys we'll have dates out at 8 p.m.," Mohiuddin said.

Mohiuddin says the fasting helps with the spirituality of Ramadan. 

"Because when you're hungry, you really have to save your energy," he said.

He says you learn to prioritize your emotional energy:

"You definitely start to see things differently when you're hungry for 30 days," Mohiuddin admitted.

For more on Ramadan and Eid, the celebration that follows, subscribe to to the What's Cooking podcast on the radio.com app.