Ramadan 2023 in the UAE: Try these easy-to-make Iftar recipes at home

With Ramadan underway, we are back with its weekly list of starter, main course, and dessert recipes for you to try

By CT Desk

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Published: Sat 25 Mar 2023, 12:24 PM

Fried Lamb Kibbeh (Serves 10 portions of 3 pieces)


For the Kibbeh Dough:

Fine Bourgul (washed and drained) – 800gr

Salt – 12gr

Approx. 2 large White Onions – 220gr

Paprika Powder – 15gr

Fresh Mint Leaves – 40gr

Seven Spice – 1tbsp

Ice Cold Water – 350ml

Corn Flour – 30gr

Lean Beef Steak cubed – 350gr

For the Lamb Stuffing:

Red Onion – 100gr

Ghee – 50gr

Lamb Mince – 200gr

Salt – 1tsp

Seven Spice – 1tsp

Paprika Powder – 1tsp

Fresh Parsley chopped – 1 handful (Approx. 30g)

Roasted Pinenuts – 40gr

For Garnish:

Garlic Sauce (optional)


To make the Kibbeh Dough

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients including Fine Bourgul, White Onion, Fresh Mint Leaves, Paprika Powder, Seven Spice, Lean Beef Steak, Corn Flour, Salt and Ice Cold Water.

2. Mix well with your hands or a spoon.

3. Transfer the mixture to a meat mincer machine, set to the 2mm setting. If you don't have a meat mincer machine, you can use a high-powered blender instead. Pulse the mixture until it reaches the desired consistency.

4. Once minced, transfer the kibbeh dough to a bowl with a plastic wrap and place it in the chiller for a minimum of 2 hours to allow the dough to cool and firm up.

5. After the dough has chilled, remove it from the chiller and divide it into 30g balls. Use your hands to roll the balls into smooth, even shapes. Your kibbeh dough is now ready to use!

To make the Lamb Stuffing:

1. Heat the ghee or clarified butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté until it turns golden brown.

2. Add the minced lamb to the pan and cook for approximately 6 minutes, stirring frequently, until the meat is browned.

3. Add all the spices and continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes, stirring to ensure the spices are evenly distributed and the meat is fully cooked

4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley and roasted pine nuts. Allow the lamb mixture to cool completely.

Assembling the Kibbeh:

1. Take the kibbeh dough that’s been divided it into 30g balls and carefully press a hole in the center of each ball to create a pocket for the filling.

2. Place a teaspoon of the lamb mixture into the pocket of each ball of dough. Carefully shape the dough around the filling to completely enclose it and form an oval or torpedo shape.

3. Once all the kibbeh balls are filled and shaped, transfer them to a baking sheet and place them in the freezer to firm up for at least 30 minutes before cooking.

4. The stuffed kibbeh can be fried in hot oil until golden brown and crispy at 180°C for approximately 8-11 minutes. Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce or yogurt-based dip. Enjoy!

Arabic Airline Chicken (Serves: 4 portions)


Chicken Breast with wing – 800gr (Approx. 4 pieces)

large eggplant – 1

red bell pepper – 1

large red onions – 2

Seven Spice – 1 tbsp

lemon juice – 2 tbsp

olive oil – 4 tbsp

garlic cloves minced – 6

Salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat your oven to 220°C.

2. Slice the eggplant into 1cm rounds and place them in a large mixing bowl.

3. Chop the bell pepper into 1cm cubes and add them to the bowl with the eggplant.

4. Remove the rib bone from the chicken wings, but leave the wings attached, or use boneless chicken breasts (if you prefer). Add the chicken to the mixing bowl as well

5. Wash and peel the red onion, slice it into 1cm rounds, and add it to the mixing bowl with the other ingredients.

6. In a small mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, seven spices, minced garlic, salt, and black pepper. Mix well to combine.

7. Pour the spice mixture over the eggplant, chicken, bell pepper, and red onion, and toss gently to coat all the ingredients evenly.

8. Spread the coated ingredients out onto a large baking tray lined with parchment paper.

9. Place the baking tray in the preheated oven and roast the chicken and vegetables for approximately 25 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked and the vegetables are tender and lightly browned.

10. Remove the tray from the oven and allow the roasted eggplant, chicken, bell pepper, and red onion to cool for a few minutes before transferring them to a serving platter.

11. Serve the roasted chicken and vegetables warm or at room temperature as a delicious and healthy meal. Enjoy!

Baklava with Pistachio


Pastry filo (2 packets) – 1200gr

Pistachio nut (crushed) – 200gr

White sugar – 250gr

Water – 400ml

Fresh lemon (juice) – 30gr

Ghee – 150gr

Almond nut (crushed) – 200gr

For Garnish:

Simple sugar to taste

Pistachio nut (sliced) – 50gr

Turkish coffee powder – 25gr


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and prepare a rectangular baking dish.

2. Melt the ghee and brush it on 4 sheets of filo pastry.

3. Spread the nuts evenly over the top of the filo pastry.

4. Cover the nuts with another sheet of filo pastry and brush with ghee. Repeat this layering process with 2 more sheets of filo pastry, until you have used up all the nuts.

5. Brush the top 3 sheets of filo pastry with ghee.

6. Cut the baklava into rectangular pieces.

7. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

8. While the baklava is baking, make the sugar syrup by combining sugar, water, and lemon slices in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer until the mixture has reduced by 50 per cent.

9. Once the baklava is cooked, remove it from the oven and pour the hot sugar syrup over the top.

10. Garnish with pistachio slices and serve with Turkish coffee. Enjoy your homemade baklava with pistachios!

Recipes courtesy Chef Vanessa Bayma

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