Culture is a beautiful aspect of life in that it is both common to have or practice one but it is entirely unique to each group of people even if they come from different walks of life. An event organizer for a wedding catering in the Philippines or even as a cook for guests in one’s home, one has to be mindful of “Halal” or as defined by the holy book “Qur’an” as “Permissible” and in this case, food.
Faith is a powerful thing and at times, it may even serve as a rule for living for some people; With this in mind, one has to be considerate of other people’s cultures especially if they are one’s guests. The Muslim faith prohibits its faithful to eat certain kinds of food but where there is a restriction; there is always an exception, hence, halal.
Basically the food that Muslim people are allowed to eat, halal are foodstuff that are subjected to a rigorous set of standards set forth by differing united Halal Food Authorities, depending on location. Halal is characterized by being free of blood and majority of the halal food are actually food that we consume every day!
Halal was determined before in ancient times based on necessity and of course, faith. At the time, no suitable farming methods were known yet and livestock were usually subjected to disease, especially the pigs hence, they were considered as “dirty” and people were strictly reminded that haram or non-halal foods are forbidden from consumption.
It is highly debatable as to why these rules are still in place but one thing is for sure: Halal food is definitely a tradition that has since been modernized for the 2010’s people’s palette.
A lot of foods that we consume today actually have their roots in halal food consumed by people of Arabic descent. One might think to oneself that this fact is impossible and that it is difficult to look for a halal-specialty store but that’s where you are wrong.
Some examples of halal food that you may have consumed include the following:
Shawarma – Defined as meat wrapped in pita bread, shawarma is a staple of good food that can be eaten on the run. It is a balanced meal of meat, vegetables and a delicious sauce and it is one of the most common halal food that one may encounter everywhere.
Kebab – Skwered meet, kebabs are usually prepared with vegetables such as tomatoes, corn and onions, kebab is a healthy meal that’s both tasty and nutritious.
Hummus-based meals – Hummus is a sauce made from chickpeas (or other similar beans) with olive oil, garlic, salt and lemon juice. Hummus is usually used as a dip or as a base for a lot of meals.
Yogurt-based meals – Similar to hummus, yoghurt is considered halal and is often used as a sauce for shawarma and as a base for some Arabic dishes.
Some common things between halal foods is that they are often healthy and a lot of them may be Arabic but anything that complies with the Halal standards can actually be considered as food that is permissible to eat. Some restaurants (such as KFC and The Halal Guys) advertise that they have halal certification to attract Muslim customers.
Halal food may have originated from tradition but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have to be modernized and in fact, everyone should try out more Arabic and Halal-friendly food because they’re all healthy and best of all, delicious.
Kimberly Marie Gayeta (Kimmy) is a Communications Degree holder, currently working as an online Marketing Representative for JUAN CARLO: Wedding Catering.