The Definitive Guide to Living in the Capital , Cairo , Egypt

Health & Fitness -

How to Celebrate Sham El-Naseem in Ramadan

cairo Celebration Eggs egypt Fesikh Iftar Ramadan Sham Al-Naseem Suhoor water
How to Celebrate Sham El-Naseem in Ramadan
written by
Nada Medhat

Egyptians love celebrations of all kinds! Especially ones that involve family gatherings and food. This year, we can’t wait to celebrate both Ramadan and Sham El-Naseem at once! The more, the merrier, right? 

Everyone is excited, but there remains a little worry tainting some of our excitement; how could we celebrate both at once? After all, Ramadan and Sham El-Naseem are two completely different traditions, with somewhat different demands. So, if you’re worried they might clash unpleasantly, rather than to the greater pleasure of both, we have a few tips for you that should make it all go smoothly!

Be Late to the Park

If you intend to go to a park or a public garden, don’t be too early, especially if you’re fasting. You’ll fall exhausted quickly! This will definitely be the case if you have children with you, especially ones who are old enough to fast, they’ll exhaust themselves too! By the time the sun sets, you’ll all be drowsy. Since Renga and Fesikh are notorious for putting a sleeping spell on us, the meal, too, might just muck up your enjoyment of the day!

Enjoy your Fesikh and Renga…Carefully.

Whether at home or on a picnic outside, whether the weather is cool or hot, we all know this is the absolute biggest clash between Ramadan and Sham El-Naseem. “Fesikh loves water,” we commonly say in Egypt, and it’s absolutely true! Fesikh, and to a smaller extent, renga, contain over 17 per cent salt. On a fasting day, this isn’t just unpleasant, it might get downright dangerous. 

So, for starters, we advise you to have fesikh and/or renga for Iftar (after breaking your fast with a gentler appetiser and re-hydrating yourself). Then, follow it up with yoghurt or Laban Rayeb. They’ll help in rehydration, balancing the electrolyte level in the body after getting such a high level of salt, and fight any stomach bacteria. Make sure to stay safe while buying and preparing fesikh in any case!

Avoid eating any fesikh or renga again from sunset to dawn. Enjoy yourself once, and if you get hungry again, it’d be better to snack on something lighter, less salty. Then, of course, don’t have fesikh or renga for suhoor, you’ll regret it!

Water, Water, and Water!

As aforementioned and as everyone knows, due to the salt pickled level of fesikh and renga, the one true counteract is water! To avoid getting parched and dried the following fasting days, spend the evening hours drinking as much water as you could. Consider it a mission! Try to avoid other drinks that are dehydrating by nature like coffee.

Go Easy on The Termes

For some reason, all our spring-celebration food is very high in salt and acidity! Termes is normally soaked in salt water and somewhat pickled as well. It’s usually a very popular Sham El-Naseem snack, but don’t indulge too much if you intend to fast the following day, you don’t want to suffer! 

Colored Eggs for Suhoor

After Iftar, the little ones (and the big ones too, no judgement!) can colour their boiled eggs like every year! Then, after taking as many pictures of the coloured eggs as they want, don’t let them go to waste and add them to your suhoor table. Either left as simple hard-boiled as they are, or added to more complex dishes. Hard-boiled eggs are healthy and tasty, and a great Suhoor choice!