Tuesday,17 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1396, (31 May - 6 June 2018)
Tuesday,17 July, 2018
Issue 1396, (31 May - 6 June 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Surviving the heat

Surviving the heat
Surviving the heat

Over the last few years Ramadan has fallen during hot weather, making fasting a tougher task. This year there was a heatwave at the beginning of Ramadan, and this is expected to continue for more days to come. Some innovation is thus called for on Iftar menus, because Ramadan and the hot weather require refreshing juices to avoid dehydration.

In addition to more traditional Ramadan drinks, here are some easy-to-make drinks that will help to energise you, revive your senses, and prepare your body for the next day’s fast.  

Sobia: 

This is one of the most popular beverages in Egypt during the holy month of Ramadan. It is a starchy, milky sweet coconut-flavoured drink that is a real thirst-quencher after a long day of fasting. To prepare, soak two tablespoons of dry, uncooked and powdered rice overnight, and then mix it with two cups of coconut milk, a quarter of a cup of sugar (more or less depending on taste), one cup of water, a quarter of a cup of powdered milk, and half a teaspoon of vanilla powder. Chill and serve cold. There is also a ready-made sobia packet mix available in supermarkets. 

Jallab: 

This is a very popular Ramadan drink across the Middle East, especially in Syria, Palestine and Lebanon. It is made by diluting three tablespoons of jallab syrup made of grape molasses, dates and rose water with water. Put the mixture in a tall glass and add as much crushed ice as you like. Top the drink with pine nuts and golden raisins and serve. Jallab readymade syrup can also be found at Syrian stores.

Date shake: 

This is a super-cool drink that keeps you full, instantly removes fatigue, and provides energy. All you need are 10 seeded, finely chopped dates, 200 ml of milk, vanilla ice cream and some chocolate syrup (optional). Soak the dates in 100 ml of boiled and warm milk for half an hour. Pour the mixture into a blender, and then add the remaining 100 ml of milk and process to a smooth purée. Add ice cream and chocolate syrup. Serve in a tall glass. 

Pineapple mojito: 

This is refreshing, easy-to-prepare and naturally sweetened. It is also loaded with fresh fruit flavours and low in calories. In a small mixing bowl, add four or five pineapple pieces and muddle them together using the back of a wooden spatula until they have broken into small pieces. Then add four or five fresh mint leaves and again muddle for a few seconds to bruise the leaves and release the essential flavours. Transfer the mixture into a serving glass. Add ice cubes followed by half a cup of chilled grape juice (if possible prepared at home), one tablespoon of lime juice, and half a cup of chilled sparkling water or soda. Give it a gentle mix, add a couple of lime slices to garnish, and then enjoy a glass of pineapple mojito this Ramadan.                                                                             

(To prepare the fresh grape juice, blend one cup of fresh grapes with a quarter of a cup of drinking water. Then strain to provide one cup of fresh grape juice).

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