Thursday, 12 August 2010

Ramadan Cooking

Ramadan Kareem to you all. I have been away for a while, but I am back now with even more recipes as I have been building up to this moment. As you may know, this month is Ramadan. Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic Calender. It's a month where Muslim all over the world are going to be fasting from sunrise to sunset in order to re-focus on what is spiritually important in their lives. Every night when it's time for Iftar (when we break our fast), a date is used to break our fast with as it was believed to have been done with our Prophet Mohammed p.b.u.h. 

I will be cooking different food every night and I will be posting it up on my blog for you all. Yesterday was the first day of Ramadan. Below is the recipe and pictures of what we had for Iftar.

Feta cheese and spinach in filo pastry


Filo pastry sheets (6 sheets), room temperature
200g Feta cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup chopped spring onions, white bits too
350g frozen spinach, defrosted and juice squeezed out by hand
1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
100g melted butter
2 eggs lightly mixed
2tbsp olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Put the spinach in a medium sized bowl and add salt & pepper, crumbled feta cheese, parsely and put aside. Gently fry the spring onions in olive oil until soft, when cooled down, add to spinach mixture. Slowly add egg, little bit at a time, only until the mixture has a little moisture added to it.

Get the filo pastry, lay it down on  a work surface, one sheet a time. The first sheet, brush melted butter on it, not too much, just enough for the second layer to stick to it. Repeat this process with all six layers. Now add the spinach mixture at the bottom end of the filo pastry, almost forming a sausage shape. 

Then gently and slowly, roll it up and cut in half in a slight angle. Put the two pieces in a greased oven-proof pan. Get a sharp knife and make slits, portion sizes, so it is easier to cut when it's taken out of the oven. 

Brush top with melted butter and put in the oven on 175 degrees (Celsius), 350 Fahrenheit, gas mark 3, for 40 min, or until top is golden brown.  

FASOLIA (cannelloni beans with lamb)  

This is a dish prepared and eaten with Jasmine rice. I grew up on this, my mum used to make it for us every so often and it's one of my favourite dishes. I even had to call her last night to make sure I had the recipe exactly like hers. 


serves 4 adults, (large portions)

500g lamb shoulder cut into medium sizes
1 1/2 cups cannelloni beans, dried ones which you need to soak overnight in water
2 heaped tbsp tomato purée
1 medium onion chopped 
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
black pepper

Boil the meat in plain water for 1 1/2 hours, always keeping an eye on the water level being just above the meat. When finished, the water level should be just covering the meat. 
Boil the cannelloni beans in water without stirring it at all for 1 hour in a non stick pot. Once time is up, put aside. You need to keep an eye on this as well and make sure the water is just above the beans. Fry the chopped onions in olive oil till just soft. Add the meat and all its juices to the cannelloni beans, alongside that add the onions as well. Bring back to a boil, lower heat to simmering, add salt, tomato purée and black pepper, do not mix with a spoon, just close the lid and let the boiling of the water mix it all for you. If you mix it, the beans stick to the bottom of the pan. Let this cook until the liquid has thickened. Do not add more water, if you add water, you will lose that thickness of the sauce. You do not want watery sauce, you want it to be thick. 

Serve with basmati rice and enjoy!

1 comment:

Mariama said...

This dish was soooooo scummy.....loved it sooooo much.