Ramadan is a very important date in the Islamic calendar, whereby muslims across the world fast between dawn and sunset. This means that they do not eat or drink from the time the sun rises in the morning, to when it sets in the evening. This lasts for an entire month, and this year Ramadan spans from the 23rd April to the 23rd May.
Dates play a very important role in the Ramadan festival. Three dates are supposed to be eaten at Iftar, which is the meal which breaks the fasting. This is because, in the Quran, the prophet Mohammed broke his fasting by eating three dates and some water.
But why dates?
Dates are a very important fruit in the Middle East, an area which is home to a lot of muslims, and they have been grown there for over 7,000 years. Dates are known for their sweet flavour, but also their many uses. They can be used in sweet and savoury dishes, or eaten on their own as a snack.
Dates contain a lot of fibre, iron, potassium and magnesium which are good for the body. They are easily digested and they are also great source of energy, which makes them the perfect food to eat when finishing fasting.
Though dates are commonly associated with the muslim community, they are growing in popularity in communities across the world. Today the world’s leader of dates are Egypt, Iran and Algeria.