Ramadhan is finally here.

It’s that time of the year again!

Time to take out the baking trays, watch Raya-related cooking shows, beg tailors to take last minute baju raya tailoring, dust the fan (I hope we do this more than once a year), clear the shopping bags and boxes hidden under the bed (tucked away from being seen by the hubby), brave the crowd at Ramadhan bazaar and controlling oneself from buying 10 different types of food for just 1 stomach, the peaceful congregation at the mosque during terawikh prayers followed by thundering sounds of bunga api and mercun everywhere ! How I wish I were back home.

The sights, the smell, the sound, there’s just nothing like it.

With the fasting month fast approaching, muslims everywhere will prepare to whip up their best dishes to serve during the buka puasa and to prepare for the month-long celebration of Aidilfitri (this involves testing Hari Raya recipes on the family).

Ramadhan has always been my favourite month of the year and the best way to truly appreciate the atmosphere is to be in a muslim country. I do not know how I have managed to survive this long celebrating both Ramadhan and Aidilfitri away from home. I have always tried to recreate the atmosphere by attempting dishes which reminds me of the season but of course this is never the same as being home. Well, before I get choked up and risk short-circuiting my laptop, allow me get straight to the point.

First of all, a confession.

I am no master baker or a skilled cook. I do not know why sometimes my pancakes turn up nice and fluffy, and other times flat and sad. I sometimes get confused by the different types of flour and sugar and why my heavy cream turns into butter! Like many of you (well not you who bake like it’s merely ABC) I can never get the science of baking and the art of cooking right. Maybe I have not been paying attention to details or maybe I have not fully understood the properties of each ingredient and the reaction that could occur when mixed together (that’s the Chem Eng in me talking). But I’m determined to unravel this ‘mystery world of cooking and baking’ in hope to better understand them once and for all (and finally stop wasting food!). Why bother going through the trouble? Well that’s for another entry (or I’ll never be able to finally end this one already!). So yes, I will research, experiment and investigate the ‘science’ of it all and I hope this journey will help make me a better cook and not fear baking (and sometimes cooking) too much. I hope to post up on this blog my findings, success stories and failures, and I hope to learn from those who know more than me.

After all, you only fear what you don’t know. So let’s get knowing!

Till then, say your Ramadhan niat, and have a blessed Ramadhan.

Ramadhan Kareem,

Mariam S

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