Suhoor (of the dawn), Doha, Qatar

With the Ramadan festivities taking place all around Qatar, we decided to experience a suhoor style meal on the weekend. While the iftar is the meal that breaks the fast, the suhoor is the meal taken before fasting, usually in the early hours of the morning before sunrise. Its purpose is to nourish and ready the body for another day of fasting. Suhoors at most restaurants start around 9pm and finish up at 2am. The sunrises at about 3:38am in Qatar this year, and fasting starts on the dot.

We arrived at 9am at the Intercontinental and since we didn’t have an ‘iftar’-like meal, it was essentially our dinner – so we were starving! There was quite a variety of Arabic dishes… hummus, tahini, salads, freshly made falafel, foul (an Egyptian staple consistent of beans), belela (a Lebanese staple), shawarma. It was delicious! There were also an assortment of Arabic juices including a bright pink drink (labelled ‘Rose’) that tasted like liquid Turkish delight. All in all it was a tasty evening!

I attended a suhoor for work a few days later at the W hotel. The same concept – but the grand ballroom was decked out, Arabian style. The food ‘tent’ was decorated in traditional Qatari bedouin fabrics, mats and there was an amazing array of desserts. Highly recommended!