Saturday, July 13, 2013

Ramadan Dieting

Ramadan treats from my friend "H".

Well friends, we are a few days into the Holy month of Ramadan here in Abu Dhabi. No I'm not Muslim, so you're probably wondering why that means anything at all to a non Muslim. Wellllllll, Ramadan in a Muslim country means you have to follow some rules regarding eating or drinking in the view of others prior to sundown or you can get into trouble. These aren't the only rules, just the hardest ones to follow when it's 120 degrees Fahrenheit outside.

My husband and I have decided to use Ramadan as our chance to drop a few pounds we gained eating our way through France last month. I'll share with you more on the Paris trip later, but when you see the pictures you will understand why you can't say no to French cuisine, especially the desserts. Anyways, since most of the restaurants are closed here during the day, and the few that are open and hidden from view of those fasting are completely packed with Westerners, we've decided to skip lunch and only have a light snack here at the house.

I should mention that one of the cool things about Ramadan is that the government mandates that the work day for people in the private sector be reduced by 2 hours each day during Ramadan for both Muslims and non Muslims. Some companies have even more reduced hours, as is the case with my husband's company. They are working a 9am-2pm schedule during the month of Ramadan.

Since he's getting in so early, our dinners are earlier than normal making it easy to skip or only snack at lunch. It seemed like the perfect plan to lose a little weight, but I didn't factor in the generosity of my Muslim friend and neighbor, "H", who has started sending over Ramadan goodies.

You see during Ramadan it is the custom for Muslims to share with their friends, family, and strangers. Well, my dear friend H knows I love chocolate. She always makes sure she has some chocolate goody when whenever we have tea together. Today, she sent over what I can only define as "Chocolate Death Cake" and dates fresh off the tree in her garden to share her holiday with me.

If we keep getting delicious treats like this during the next month, I'm thinking our little weight loss plan is going out the window.

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