Untitled-28Nia S. Amira
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Ramadan has come, and as Muslims of course we are delightful to welcome the very blessed month of the year with happiness! The nuance of fasting month is already visible and boisterous throughout Indonesia, even before Ramadan arrives. Be­sides already filled with a variety of pastries for the Eid al-Fitr, the items of basic necessities have already started rising prices in traditional markets. Various television pro­grams rely special events of Rama­dan even since the early morning. Large banners congratulating wor­ship also seen at the roadside.

Each country has its own way of welcoming the holy month of Ra­madan. Iftar certainly be something to look forward to after a full day of hunger and thirst. Of course there is always a special food that will be eat­en when breaking, and sometimes these foods will not be found in addi­tion to the month of Ramadan only. As the largest Muslim country in the world, we can have strong feeling of the natural atmosphere of Ramadan in Indonesia, what with the feel of Ramadan in other countries?


Russia is not a Muslim country, but Russia in neighboring Muslim countries formerly part of the ter­ritory of Russia, so it was natural that many Muslims living in Russia. Russia’s Muslims must take 17 hours every day when perfom the fast­ing in Ramadan. There are over 20 million Muslims in Russia and they usually gather in the 8000 mosques provided in this ice bear country while eating Khingalsh or Galnash when the muezzin calls for prayers at Maghrib. Khingals is bread stuffed with cheese, while Galnash is bread made from wheat. Muslims in South­ern Russia has a fermented beverage called Kvass that do not contain alco­hol. Kvass is a compulsory drink for Russian muslin during Ramadan.


Kasghar is a Muslim region of China bordering with Kazakhstan; Mongolia in the northeast; Kirghiz­tan and Tajikistan in the north-west; and with Afghanistan and Pakistan in the south-west. Uyghur nation liv­ing in Kasghar a clan Turkish descent living in Central Asia, especially in Xinjiang province, China. Uyghurs call their area as Uyghuristan or East Turkestan. Although not as vibrant as in other Islamic countries, It is a mandatory agenda for Chinese Mus­lims to break the fasting together and it is as a venue for a gathering of local residents.


Jordanian Muslims normally decorate their streets with a variety of colorful lights during the fasting month. Jordanians also have rules for having meal in one table during Ramadan, whether they know the person who invited to eat or not. And for Iftar menu, Jordanians usu­ally provide Mansaf and Qatayef. Mansaf is sort of kebuli rice cooked with lamb meat processed in the fur­nace in the basement with spices. While Qatayef is a kind of pancake with cinnamon and filled with wal­nuts or sugar.


In the US, Muslims welcome the holy month of Ramadan in a unique way, breaking the fast in two ways; first come to the mosque with food of each person called regularly as potluck, then collected in one table and eat together, the second way is dine together with close neighbors, whether Muslim or non-Muslim. In this tradition, Muslims in the USA as if to show togetherness and share the month of Ramadan along with anyone they know or do not know, merely to show that Islam is a reli­gion of peace and brotherhood.


Muslims in Turkey welcome Ra­madan with big joy and happiness. In big city like Istanbul, all the res­taurants always compete to offer a special menu for breaking the fast­ing. A set menu with a soup dish if­tariye, pide bread or toast in a spe­cial sort only sold during Ramadan, pastirma, sujuk, and a variety of pas­tries called börek. The main course comes from traditional Turkish menu from the Ottoman era. While the famous dessert called “güllaç” made of rose water.


There are many food that were found when breaking the fast in Lebanon. The menu is typical of the Middle East which is common in such Lebanese mezza, tabbou­leh, houmous, and various kinds of grilled meat.


In this Queen Cleopatra’s land, Muslims normally break the fasting with medames. Besides medames which becomes the main course, there are also other menu grace the breaking time of fasting such as molokheya made of chicken and rice. Ramadan is not complete with­out Medames and Molokheya.


The population of Muslims in In­dia reached over 130 million and the holy month of Ramadan becomes a month long-awaited, especially in certain area such as Hyderabad, as the menu is called Hyderabadi Haleem. It is a typical food like tra­ditional oatmeal in spicy flavors, sa­vory, and usually served with lamb.


Iftar without samosas in Paki­stan, it will feel less than perfect. Snacks such as samosas are tasty and spicy fried cake in triangular form. Almost all the stalls dotted around the city sell samosa.


Muslims of Bangladesh has some typical menus that are usually served when breaking the fasting; like Pi­yaju, beguni, jilapi, muri, Halim, tanggal, samosa, dal puri, chola, and various kinds of fruits. While drinks like Rooh Afza with different taste and lemon sherbet is breaking menu which is popular all over Bangladesh.


In Malaysia, Muslims have a habit that is quite unique, break their fast with a dried meal and fresh dates. A wide variety of typical Malaysian food provided in Ramadan Bazaar such as sugarcane juice, nasi lemak, laksa, percek ayam, chicken rice, sa­tay and others.


There are dozens or even hun­dreds of culinary types commonly presented by Muslims in Indonesia when looking forward to breaking the fast. However Kolak always be the best choice during the month of fasting and people never feel bored to enjoy a bowl compote with a variety of flavors and content like banana compote, sweet potato, fermented cassava, or a mixture of all three, or even added with sugar palm fruits and cooked with coconut milk, brown sugar and sugar. While fresh drinks like cendol or fruit soup into a breaking fasting menu await­ed after a day of hunger and thirst.

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