Thursday, August 28, 2008

Date Dilemma

In the prelude to Ramadhan, coming a respectable third in the topic of conversation league to the perennial moon-sighting debacle and what date to book off work for Eid, is the date dilemma.

Traditionally consumed at the time of breaking the fast, the wrong date can induce huge feelings of regret as a chalky, flaky, pseudo-sweet disaster destroys your palate. Thoughts of chewing the stone are usually not far away at this point.

Thankfully, such experiences have been few and far between. My earliest childhood date memories revolve around the ubiquitous almond-stuffed blocks of dates from Medina. These were soon replaced by the uniquely glossy rotab dates of Iran.

Enter the Medjool date.

A Medjool (left) and a Khadrawi (right) date.

The Medjool date represents the evolutionary pinnacle of the date species. This year's crop from South Africa, which I managed to get my hands on in Green Street, is exceptional.

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