Ramadan in UAE: Iftar treats to try out at home

Filed on May 8, 2021


Why not whip up these recipes for an Iftar with family?


Potato Bowl:

Potatoes 500gm

Cold water(as needed)

Salt½ tsp

All-purpose flour3 tbsp

Oil for frying


Chickpeas1 can (400gm)

Onion½ chopped


Salto season

Red chili powder1/4tsp

For Serving:

Yogurt, thinned out with water

Green chutney

Sweet chutney

Chaat masala

Crispy topping


1) Peel and grate potatoes in a large mixing bowl, immerse in cold water.

2) Squeeze all the water out of the grated potatoes and transfer to a dry bowl.

3) Add salt and all-purpose flour to the potatoes and mix them all together.

4) Use a heat-proof bowl of any size and shape the grated potato mix inside it to form a “potato bowl”, and place another heatproof bowl on top of the potato bowl to hold the shape (you can also cover it with aluminum foil. Ensure it’s placed directly on the potato bowl without any space).

5) In a wok, heat frying oil enough to submerge your entire bowl and cook until the potato turns golden brown.

6) For the filling, combine the drained chickpeas, onion, tomatoes, salt, and red chili powder in a bowl.

7) Place the filling in your prepared potato bowls and top it with yogurt, both the chutneys, chaat masala, and crispy topping.



Cumin seeds1 ½ tsp

Fennel seeds1 ½ tsp

Minced lamb500gm

Garam masala½ tsp

Parsley, finely chopped15gm

Onion.............................½ chopped

Crushed garlic cloves...........1 ½

Salt and black pepper, to season

Coriander leaves1 tbsp


Pomegranate seeds250gm

Caster sugar80gm

Lemon juice1 ½ tbsp

Dried chili flakes¼ tsp

Pomegranate molasses1 tbsp


Tahini paste120gm


Salt, to season


1) Preheat the oven at 200 degree Celsius.

2) Place the cumin and fennel seeds in a heated pan and roast until they become aromatic.

3) Grind the roasted seeds into powder.

4) Place minced lamb, garam masala, toasted ground spices, parsley, garlic, onion, salt, and a pinch of black pepper into a large bowl and mix with hands until everything comes together.

5) Shape the koftas and prepare for cooking.

6) Heat oil in a pan and add koftas, cooking until charred on all sides, about 1-2 minutes, then, transfer the frying pan of koftas into the oven until just cooked through, about 5-10 minutes.

7) For the Pomegranate Jam, combine all ingredients, along with a pinch of salt, in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer.

8) Continue to simmer until the mixture is slightly reduced, about 8-10 minutes.

9) For the Tahini Sauce, combine all the ingredients and whisk until the mixture becomes thick. Add more or less water until it achieves a pourable consistency.

10) To serve, spoon some of the Tahina sauce on the plate and arrange the Koftas on it. Then top the Koftas with a little Pomegranate Jam and finish with a garnish of coriander leaves.



Cream cheese200gm

Granulated sugar55gm

Sour cream28gm

Squeeze of lemon

Vanilla1/2 tsp

Egg 1

Kunafa Crust:

Kunafa dough

Butter (melted)

Sugar Syrup:

Granulated sugar200gm


Squeeze of lemon

Cinnamon stick1/2

Cardamom pod1

For topping:

Arabic thick cream/Qeshta cream

Whipped cream


1) Preheat your oven to 160C

Note: This cheesecake is baked in a water bath. For the water bath, take a baking pan big enough to fit your cheesecake pan. This will be filled with boiling water at the time of baking.

2) Prepare a 6-inch baking pan by covering the bottom with parchment paper, then wrap the outside of the pan with foil to avoid water from seeping into your batter.

3) In a bowl, whisk cream cheese until it becomes smooth, creamy, and has no lumps. You can use a hand whisk or an electric mixer.

4) Add in the sugar and beat until smooth with no sugar grains.

5) Next, add in the sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla, and mix until incorporated.

6) Finally, add the egg and whisk until the batter is smooth. Make sure not to overmix.

7) Pour the batter into your prepared 6inch pan, then transfer the cheesecake pan to the bigger baking tray.

8) Fill the bigger baking tray with boiling water until it reaches halfway through the height of your cheesecake batter, be careful not to splash the water into the cheesecake batter or on your hands.

9) Bake the cheesecake for 30-40 minutes, until the sides become puffy and set but the center is still jiggly.

10) Switch the oven off, take the cheesecake pan out of the water bath and let it cool in the oven with the door kept open slightly to avoid any cracks.

11) After an hour, take the cheesecake out of the oven, run a warm knife through the sides to release it, and carefully take it out on a cooling rack and let it cool completely.

12) Once cooled, transfer it into the freezer until ready to use.

13) Next, prepare the sugar syrup by combining all the ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to boil on medium heat and let it simmer on low heat for 10 minutes.

14) For the kunafa crust, shred the kunafa dough into small pieces, then pour melted butter and mix with your hands until the dough is evenly coated.

15) Create a thin, flat layer of the kunafa mix on the same pan you used for the cheesecake batter and bake for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown.

16) Once baked, pour some sugar syrup on top while the kunafa is still warm.

17) For assembling, place the frozen cheesecake layer on the kunafa crust (once cooled), add a layer of Arabic thick cream on top along with a piping of whipped cream. Finish the cheesecake with a generous dose of sugar syrup.

Recipes courtesy Ayesha Khan. A marketer by profession, but a chef at heart, Ayesha is passionate about food – making it, styling it, and eating it! Desserts are her favourite and she loves experimenting with flavours to create unique sweets. You can follow Ayesha’s Ramadan kitchen diaries on Instagram @ayeshank and find all her recipes on her YouTube channel – Ayesha Nemat Khan.