“What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.” – Mother Teresa
Is there anything better than being at home with people we love?
Maybe sharing food with them is the only thing slightly better 🙂 I am all for home entertaining. I like to eat out too and take my friends out for dinner at times. But nothing like entertaining with a home cooked meal. It is always special to put effort and a lot of thought into the things you offer to friends, and I find that cooking a whole Menu at home is one very thoughtful thing to do.
Offering to share food that you have cooked is a very warm gesture, and in Arabic culture, it’s hugely appreciated. These gatherings are intensely revived during the month of Ramadan, it seems we are either inviting or invited throughout the month. I know that today a lot of people prefer ordering take outs, or hiring a catering service for their events, which is understandable taking into consideration the busy lives we all lead. But let me tell you: There is nothing more satisfying than cooking the food yourself, then your guests indulging in and complimenting your food.
We all know that cooking comes from a place within, we like to call that ingredient love. It is that piece of you that you share when you offer food that you have cooked yourself. It is always warm, always better and always more welcoming.
If the thought above appeals to you and you wish to carry out a home cooked Iftar, then here is a menu that will help you do that with flying colours.
The Traditional Jordanian Menu
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This is a menu that includes food options which are traditionally cooked for a big guest list. Mansaf is a traditional Jordanian dish that is usually served at big gatherings and important events such as weddings, Iftars, Eid Lunches…etc. It is the star of this menu. This dish is the type of food that can be carried out all the same for 4 or 400 people. It is the same preparation, only the portions will vary. Mansaf is a dish that includes fermented goat’s yoghurt, lamb meat and rice. The Mansaf yoghurt sauce is heavy and creamy, therefore it is best surrounded by light foods instead of more heavy foods. Otherwise your guests will be too full and bothered by the food after being done. For that reason, I have chosen a Fresh Tomato Soup, as it is is very light, refreshing and not very filling. It is a delicious way to start the meal, prepping your palate for the rest of the menu.
Hummus and Eggplant Mutabal are Arabic menu staples. They are amazing to get your appetite going. Fattoush is a garden salad that includes toasted or fried pita bread cubes, dressed with sumac and pomegranate molasses.
The succulent Fattet Djaj is just an absolutely Divine appetiser, that in this menu can double as main for those who are not big on red meat, or do not like lamb meat specifically. It is always a good idea to have a chicken platter when meat is the main course on the menu. This way, you don’t risk someone ordering take out on the way home!
With a menu so full of flavours, and including a rich main, it is best to keep it light with desserts. I find with Mansaf the best thing to follow is a fruit salad or an assortment of sliced fruits. Trust me, you can hardly eat anything else after Mansaf!
Whether you are hosting a Ramadan Iftar or any other occasion, this menu will please your guests giving them a delicious insight into the Jordanian flavours. All you need to do is a little mise en place in the morning, some prep to include making mutabal, hummus and cooking the meat. Then a couple of hours before serving you will start the actual cooking. You have the rest of the day for yourself to relax and enjoy your guests once there 🙂
Hope you like this menu, more to come shortly so stay tuned. Don’t forget to drop by tomorrow for more recipes from my annual Ramadan Special: Daily Recipes.
Share the love, and tell your friends 🙂
Always Love & Be Peaceful x