Ramadan preparation every year is an integral part of the lives of Muslims in the UK, but when you come to think of it; abstaining from food and water for 16 to 17 hours a day is no mean task, and for mums it can be even more challenging. Managing household chores, looking after the children and the family’s needs, preparing Sehri and Iftari, in some cases going to work and still finding time to pray and reflect – the month of Ramadan can seem like a juggling act!
This year the 26th May marks the onset of Ramadan in the UK and Asda is well prepared to support customers with their extensive Ramadan range. This year we spoke to mums who are busy sorting out their Ramadan schedules. From cooking tips to eating habits, from staying hydrated to personal care – we have gathered some really useful tips and suggestions from mums across the country.
We spoke to five mums including Nazneen and Ayesha from London, and Wemimo and Bushra from Manchester who have shared their tips for Ramadan preparations.
While variety is important during Iftari, it can be a daunting task to cook from scratch everyday given the long fasting hours. Just a little bit of planning can help you serve your Iftaris effortlessly. Bushra Ahmed says her freezer is her best friend. “Samosas are a staple in my house. So, I make around 150 of them a few weeks prior to Ramadan and freeze them, then all I have to do is fry them in hot oil on the day and they are ready in minutes!”
Agreeing with Bushra, self-employed mum, Wemimo Aliyu said: “Nigerian soups can take a while to cook; so, I make two or three pots at a time, store them in small containers and freeze them. A few hours before Iftari, I bring them out to defrost, and heat it when we are ready to eat. This saves on a lot of prep and cooking time.”
Whether it is samosas, soups or even your marinades and blends - your freezer is your go to place as you can prepare them 2-4 weeks before Ramadan. If you are not so much of a scratch cook there is a great range of frozen Halal products at Asda. Also, ensure you stock up on the oil for the samosas and at Asda the KTC vegetable oil is on offer for £3.80 for 5 litres.
While fasting, it is important the meals you eat include complex carbohydrates. These carbohydrates slowly release energy, throughout the day keeping you feeling fuller for longer.
Naazneen Adamjee said: “During Ramadan I make meals that are lentil based, like chana dal and I serve it with rice. This really reenergises you and gives you a carbohydrate boost. I also cook a traditional East African Iftari recipe called Ujji which is a broth made of bajra, jowar and rice – perfect mix of slow release grains. It gives a good carbohydrate kick that keeps me going throughout the day.”
To create a filling and nutritious dish, pop over to Asda where 2kg East End Chana Dhal £3.90
Wemimo always makes sure there are hydrating fruits on her table during Ramadan, this helps her ensure her family remain hydrated throughout the day: “Watermelons, mangoes and oranges not only keep you feeling fuller longer, they help you stay hydrated during the day and give you the vitamins your body needs.”
Knowing how important hydration is, at Asda large watermelons are now £3 and to save you the hassle of peeling and slicing, 850g of KTC Alphonso Mango Pulp 850g pulp is for £1.50.
While everyone knows about the importance of stocking up on essential food items before Ramadan, sometimes finding time to pop into your local store may not be convenient, this is where online shopping can play a big part.
While Wemimo says, she prefers going to the supermarket for fresh meat and vegetables she said. “Supermarkets like Asda, have made life simpler with online shopping. All I do is make a list of what I want, from small items like canned tomatoes to larger items like the 20kg bag of rice, I get everything I need delivered to me at a time of my choice. That way I get more time to wrap up the household chores.”
While you are busy prepping your kitchen, and running around to get things in order, it is important to take out some time to take care of yourself. Naazneen said: “Abstaining from food and water can take a toll on your body, so a month before I take small steps like weaning off coffee so my body doesn’t get dehydrated. Also, I make sure I moisturise my skin twice a day, as sometimes lack of water during the day can make my face and hands feel dry.”
British Bangladeshi Ayesha does this by drinking at least a litre of water at Sehri so that the body gets a healthy dose of water before the fasting hour kicks off.
This year Asda has a unique range of Halal cosmetics, to help your skin to remain nourished through Ramadan.
Asda hopes these tips will help you prepare better for Ramadan this year and wishes you all Ramadan Kareem.