Celebrating Ramadan with Dairy
Ramadan is the holiest month of the year in Islamic culture. It’s a time for spiritual reflection and growth, to help those in need, and to spend time with loved ones. During Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset each day. Throughout the holy month, dairy is often incorporated into diets when fasts are broken after sunset to help refuel and energize.
Michigan Muslim resident Enas Maki, a nutritionist, recipe developer and member of the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, MI shared her experience and traditions with celebrating Ramadan, along with several tasty Middle Eastern dairy-based recipes. Enas, who is Lebanese, has participated in Ramadan since the age of nine. “Fasting from Ramadan is not just fasting from food,” she said. “A person must be kind, whether it’s to human beings or animals, give back, be forgiving, honest, patient, respect their loved ones & elders and control their anger.”
Enas celebrates the first day of Ramadan by getting together with her loved ones for dinner. She often prepares a delicious dairy-based cake called Lebanese Nights Dessert for her family to enjoy. During Ramadan, after sunset when they break their fast, Enas and her family partake in a tasty dairy-based Laban Drink (Yogurt Drink) that helps to fuel their bodies and give them energy. This drink can be made with our Homemade Yogurt recipe.
The end of Ramadan is a celebration known as Eid al-Fitr, one of the major holidays for Muslims. There is a special communal prayer to mark the end of Ramadan, and families and friends come together to celebrate strengthening their relationship with God.