The month of Ramadan may be a period of fasting but it’s equally synonymous with feasting. Iftar – the evening meal with which Muslims break their fast – is an occasion for eating favourite dishes and indulging in the naughtiness of moreish snacks after a day of abstaining.
In India, mealtimes are very much a family affair and everything is shared which makes these cheese-and-pastry twirls perfect for making together this half-term (they’re very tempting though so sharing may be optional). They’re incredibly easy to make plus you only need ready-made puff pastry and a handful of store-cupboard ingredients, which make them just right for keeping little hands happily occupied during the holidays. There’s also a cinnamon sugar variation so we recommend you and your budding chefs make both, to satisfy sweet and savoury tastes. Be sure to dip them into hot masala chai for extra enjoyment.
1 sheet of ready-made puff pastry (320g), about 35 x 23cm
Flour, for dusting
1 egg white, beaten
For the topping
1¼–1½ tsp chaat masala
40g mature Cheddar, finely grated
4 tsp chopped coriander leaves
Cinnamon sugar sticks: For the topping, mix 4 tsp white granulated sugar with 1 tsp ground cinnamon. Roll out the pastry and cut into strips as above. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar (there’s no need to press it in with a rolling pin), then twist and bake as above.
For other Dishoom recipes, please see Dishoom: from Bombay with love, our cookery book and highly subjective guide to Bombay.
As a thirteen year old boy in Delhi with endless energy and appetite, I treasured Sunday mornings. I’d wake up early, jump on my rickety Hero Cycle bicycle and hurriedly pedal five miles to a park close to Shantivan and Raj Ghat. There, me and my friends would set-up makeshift stick stumps and play cricket for hours… or until our minds and bellies turned (inevitably) to food.
The festival of Eid al-Fitr (literally “the Celebration of the Breaking of the Fast”) marks the conclusion of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month where restraint and discipline must be practised.
The culmination of Ramadan will bring with it Chand Raat (the night of the moon), an evening of great excitement and unity. It’s the eventide or moment the first crescent moon of the month is observed, which marks the end of the holiest month of the Islamic calendar, a period of fasting, prayer and reflection, and the start of Eid, the beginning of great festivities.
Compassion. Generosity. Discipline. Honesty. Selflessness. Tolerance. These principles lie at the heart of Islam. Our Muslim brothers and sisters are bound to give, share and take care of others.