Ramadan in Makkah has a special flavor

Ramadan in Makkah has a special flavor
Updated 17 July 2013

Ramadan in Makkah has a special flavor

Ramadan in Makkah has a special flavor

Ramadan in Makkah is different to how the month is spent in other Islamic countries. Life dramatically changes along with eating habits, and some common dishes are replaced with special Ramadan dishes.
In this month, imams in all mosques across the world — not just in the Two Holy Cities — undertake the recitation of the entire Holy Qur’an from beginning till end. This is called the “Khatm Al-Qur’an” and in most mosques in Makkah, this “Khatm” at the end of the month is celebrated with sweets distributed to worshippers.
The congregation for Isha and Taraweeh prayers inside the Grand Mosque reflects the dynamic unity of Muslims. Islam stands for unity of Muslims as one nation worshipping only God and following His divine guidance as given to the Muslim Ummah through His Prophet (peace be upon him).
For iftar, only dates and Saudi coffee are allowed in inside the Holy Mosque. People distribute dates with the hope of earning extra rewards. The air of the external plazas of the Grand Mosque is full of the smell of different dishes that delight passersby.
Samosas are a special attraction and drinks made from yoghurt, Rooh-Afza, and Vimto bring a healthy relief to people who fast the entire day.
People have 10 minutes to eat at sunset and thousands of workers in the Grand Mosque clean up, collecting the plastic tablecloths in time for prayer.
At home, Saudis and people living in Makkah have special soup made of broken wheat, meat and spices called Shorbat Al-Habb. It is said this soup revives the strength lost during the whole day of fasting. The most common dishes in Makkah during Ramadan are kabsa, zurbiyan, mandi and roasted meat. After Maghrib prayers, the visitors crowd the restaurants for food. Wh en the call for Isha prayer is given after a two-hour break, people rush back for their Isha and Taraweeh prayers that last nearly two hours.