Traditional dishes are at the heart of most Iftar buffets. But diners love discovering new dishes, and Ramadan is no exception. This doesn’t mean you have to cast aside your most popular dishes or blow the budget on pricey ingredients to set your menu apart, instead think of some creative and tasty twists on tradition. Chef David El Bitar has some trending ideas to help get you started… 

Out: Sticking only to traditional recipes and the same overused set of ingredients.

In: Adding an Asian or Indian twist to classic dishes. Use spices popular in these cuisines to bring a new flavour profile to traditional favourites like kofta

Out: Heavy, oily or starch-laden dishes that leave diners feeling bloated.

In: Changing ingredients or cooking techniques for healthier alternatives.

Chef’s tip: Use freekeh in place of white rice. Healthy and hugely popular right now, freekeh is packed with protein, fibre and minerals, and is hearty and wholesome without being heavy.

Out: A selection of only Middle Eastern desserts.

In: Fusing Middle Eastern and Western cuisines. Diners enjoy a new taste experience, and you get to be creative and experimental in the kitchen. 

Out: Traditional sweet and syrupy drinks are no longer top of the drinks list as diners seek lighter beverages with less of a sugary after-taste.

In: Refreshing drinks like Lipton Fresh Brewed Iced Tea.  Add a generous helping of fresh strawberries and a pinch of ginger (which also aids digestion) for a beverage that diners will love.