Celebrating the holy month of Ramadan, celebrity chefs at some of Doha’s most celebrated dining restauarants highlight unmissable delectable treats from their Iftar menus. As Ramadan is a special month where family and friends create moments together, the chefs also shared a few tips on how to best prepare Iftar and Suhour dishes.

More Cravings by Marriott Bonvoy™ celebrated Ramadan this year with a myriad of special offers across a collection of award-winning restaurants in Qatar. The Ramadan offers are available at over 20 restaurants across 8 participating hotels in Doha including Sharq Village & Spa, a Ritz Carlton Hotel; The Marriott Marquis City Center Doha; The JW Marquis City Center Doha; Mariott Executive Apartments Doha; The Sheraton Grand Doha Resort & Convention Hotel; Four Points by Sheraton Doha; The Ritz-Carlton, Doha; Al-Messila Luxury Resort and The Westin Doha Hotel & Spa.

Chef Susanto Bhattacharya, Executive Chef at Sharq Village & Spa, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel

What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Chicken Kabsa  

INGREDIENTS

1/4 tsp ground cardamom (cardamom powder)
1/4 tsp ground white pepper (white pepper powder)
1/4 tsp saffron
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (cinnamon powder)
1/2 tsp ground all spice
1/2 tsp dried whole lime powder

CHICKEN KABSA:

2 tbsp. oil or butter
3 onions, sliced
1 tbsp. minced ginger (ginger paste)
1 tbsp. minced garlic (garlic paste)
1 green chili
2 dried bay leaves
6 cloves
4 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick
2 tbsp. tomato puree (tomato paste)
1 pinch ground nutmeg (nutmeg powder)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper (black pepper powder)
1/4 tsp ground cumin (cumin powder)
1/2 tsp ground coriander (coriander powder)
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
200 g canned diced tomatoes (or 3 tomatoes chopped)
2 chicken stock cubes
1 1/2 kg whole chicken, cut into 6 pieces
3 cups basmati rice, rinsed
1/4 cup raisins
Water
Salt to taste
Raisins, to garnish (optional)
Slivered almonds, to garnish (optional)

METHOD

In oil, sauté your onions, mixed garlic, ginger and chilli.
Add chicken and all other ingredients together (except for the rice and water). Allow to simmer for 5 mins, then add the rice. Add enough water until the rice is fully cooked.
For garnish, nuts and raisins may be added with a hint of rose water.
Chef Susanto golden tip for preparing Iftar/Suhoor is to always plan in advance, especially when hosting guests. Such planning will give time to shop for the premium ingredients.
He added that it is important to choose healthy and hearty recipes that include plenty of greens and fruits over fried and spiced dishes to avoid heartburn that may be caused due to fasting.

“Enjoy experimenting with “fun foods” as well. It is, after all, a time to spend memorable meals with family and loved ones”

Rajae Ghazouani, Executive Chef at The Westin Doha Hotel & Spa

What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Moroccan Chicken Bastilla

INGREDIENTS 

Makes about 12 4-inch Bastillas
3 tablespoons olive oil for cooking + 1 tablespoon olive oil to roast the almonds
2 kg whole chicken cut in pieces or 2 kg chicken legs and thighs
1 kg sliced onions
1 ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground ginger
A small pinch of saffron
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 cups chopped fresh parsley, about 1 large bunch
1 cup chopped fresh coriander, about half a large bunch
400 gr blanched almonds
1 tablespoon honey
Ground cinnamon
Icing sugar
10 eggs, scrambled, plus 1 egg beaten for brushing
220 gr unsalted butter, divided
500 gr filo pastry

METHOD

FILLING Preparation

Preheat the oven to 160 C (320 F). In a large casserole, heat the olive oil and add the chicken, onions, turmeric, ginger, saffron, salt and pepper. Leave over medium heat for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the parsley and coriander along with 1 cup of water (about 240ml). Bring to the boil, lower the heat to medium-low and cover with a lid. Leave to simmer gently until the chicken is cooked, about 50 min.
Meanwhile, prepare the almonds. Place the blanched almonds in a baking tray and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Bake in the oven until golden, about 18 minutes. Once the almonds are cold enough to handle, transfer them to a food processor or a nut grinder. Add 1 ½-teaspoon cinnamon, 3 tablespoons icing sugar to the roasted almonds and process until coarsely ground. Set aside until ready to assemble.
When the chicken is cooked, take the casserole off the heat and remove the chicken pieces from the pan (leaving the cooked herbs and onions inside the pan). Add 1 tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoons icing sugar and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon to the onions and reduce the sauce to caramelize the onions. Leave over medium-low heat with no lid on top until all the liquid evaporates and the onions are golden brown, about 30 to 40 min. Stir occasionally to prevent the onions from sticking to the pan. No liquid should be left in the pan, except oil.  Add salt if necessary.
Once the chicken has cooled down to room temperature, pull out the chicken meat and discard the skin and the bones. Chop the chicken into smaller chunks, (about 1 cm/0.4 inch). Place in the fridge until ready to assemble.
In a small frying pan, melt 20-gr butter, crack the eggs and scramble them. Set aside until ready to assemble. Make sure that the scrambled eggs are not undercooked and runny because liquid can affect the pastry during the assembling process.
Now you can start assembling. You can prepare the filling up to two days in advance.

ASSEMBLING

Preheat the oven to 200 C (390 F).
Unroll the filo pastry sheets, keeping them under a damp towel to prevent them from drying out. Use a small round shallow dish (of about 10 cm (4 inches) large) and with a sharp knife, cut the pastry sheets according to the size of your dish. Cut the filo sheets into squares large enough to fit the dish and to cover the top of the pie. You will need two sheets for each pie. Check the notes below regarding the size of the filo sheets.
Heat the remaining butter until melted. Place a filo sheet on a work surface, brush it with melted butter and top it with another filo sheet that you also brush with butter. Gently place the two layers of filo sheet in the shallow dish making sure that the pastry sheet touches the inner edges of the dish.
Inside the dish, place in this order: a layer of chicken chunks (about 1 cm/0.4 inch), a layer of caramelized onions (less than 0.5 cm/0.2 inches), a layer of scrambled eggs (about 1 cm/0.4 inch) and finally, a layer of coarse almonds (less than 0.5 cm/0.2 inches). Fold the overlapping filo pastry over the top to cover the pie. Brush lightly with melted butter. Carefully, flip the Bastilla, remove it from the dish, and place it in a greased baking tray.
Brush the pies with the beaten egg and bake in the oven until golden brown, about 25 min. Serve hot and sprinkle with icing sugar and cinnamon.

Hamdi Chaklabalji, Oriental Pastry Chef at Sheraton Grand Doha Resort & Convention Hotel

What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Halawet-el-jibn

 INGREDIENTS

3kg Akkawi cheese
1kg Semolina
1kg Sugar syrup
50gm Rose water
2kg Keshta fresh
300gm Pistachio grounded
100gm Zahr el Laymoun

METHOD

Cook Akkawi cheese with semolina for around 4-5 min. Take it out on a big tray, apply sugar syrup and fold the mixture.
To make sugar syrup take 1L water with 2 kg sugar. Boil it for half an hour until it gets little thick consistency. Add rose water.

ASSEMBLY

Take small pieces of Akkawi mixture, place them on a plate, and top them with Keshta fresh, some pistachio powder, and Zahr el Laymoun. Serve it with a bit of sugar syrup if needed
Chef Hamdi believes that Best Iftar and Suhoor dishes are the ones that are rich in protein, carbohydrates and vitamins. He added that having hydrated vegetables, fruits, and nuts, for Suhoor will provide a good amount of energy while fasting.

Azmi Nofal, Chef De Partie at JW Marriott Marquis City Center Doha

What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Hummus

INGREDIENTS

1000gm Chickpeas
220gm Tahini
12gm Salt
10gm Lemon salt
50gm Corn oil
300gm Ice
5gm Soda
20gm Garlic

Garnish:
Boiled chickpeas
Olive Oil
Mint

METHOD

Soak the chickpeas in water overnight, boil the chickpeas in water with sodium bicarbonate until it becomes soft, drain the water, and cool the chickpeas down in the blast chiller. Once cooled, pass it to the blender and add lemon salt, salt, garlic, ice, and tahini and blend together. In the end, add the corn oil, give a final blend, and then it is ready.

ASSEMBLY

Place the hummus in a bowl. Add olive oil and chickpeas in the middle and place a mint leaf for decoration.

Jean Pascal Irissou, Executive Chef at W Doha Hotel

What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Bamia bi Lahma

His advice in Ramadan is to “Always cook with love and care, and be generous”

INGREDIENTS

500gm of okra fresh
250gm of chopped onion
200gm lamb fillet diced into bite-sized chunks
600 gm of chopped tomatoes
50gm of tomato concentrate
150ml of vegetable stock
2 cloves of garlic chopped
25gm of fresh coriander chopped
Salt to taste
30ml of pomegranate molasses
Olive oil

METHOD

In a pot, sauté the chopped onion in some regular olive oil until golden, on medium heat.
Add the okra and a few more drizzles of olive oil, and sauté for another 5-10 minutes until the okra is half done.
Meanwhile, chop the tomatoes and add them to the pot along with the tomato concentrate, salt and vegetable stock. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer.
In a wide pan, fry off the lamb pieces for a few minutes so they are sealed on the outside but still not fully cooked. Add the garlic and coriander and sauté for another 2-3 minutes.
Add the lamb coriander mix to the okra and simmer everything together for another 20 minutes or so until the okra is well done.
Just before you turn off the heat, add the pomegranate molasses and adjust the salt if necessary, by tasting the sauce.
Serve with vermicelli rice or flatbreads.
Drizzle some pomegranate molasses just before you turn the heat off which will lift the whole thing from nice to an absolutely amazing dish.

Llyod Ralf, Executive Pastry Chef at Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel

  • What is your favorite Ramadan recipe?

Maamoul Ashta

INGREDIENTS

DOUGH:
340gm semolina
90 gm sugar
130gm ghee
2gm baking powder
1gm salt
70gm plain yogurt

ASHTA:
330gm heavy cream
350gm milk
60gm corn starch
32gm sugar

SYRUP:
270gm sugar
160gm water
1gm salt
4gm lemon juice
4gm orange blossom

METHOD

ASHTA:
Mix all the ingredients together and bring to a boil, simmer for 3 min and cool down for 6 hours

DOUGH:
Mix all ingredients together and line up a 20 cm terra cotta pot 05 cm thick, add the ashta and cover with the rest of the dough, bake for 20 min or until golden brown at 170 degrees.

SYRUP:
Mix all the ingredients together and bring to a boil, pour on the top of the astha once it is coming out of the oven and serve.
Chef Lloyd advises preparing slow-cooked dishes the night before while avoiding salty dishes for Suhoor that invokes a sense of thirst while fasting.