Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Thareed, A dish of Bread and Meat Soup.


Tharid is described in the authentic narrations as a dish made of barley bread sopped in a meat soup/stew which was eaten by the Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wasallam) and he praised the excellence of this type of meal.

As the bread softens in the meat soup, it becomes tastier and easier to digest and this was particularly beneficial in the time of the Holy Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wassallam), when bread was unleavened and made with flour which was more coarsely ground than it is today.

Tharid provides a complete meal of carbohydrates, starches, fibre and proteins and is one of the most superb meals to enjoy. Cooking and eating this simple but nutritious dish enlivens the heart and reminds you of the Shifa and Blessings handed down to the Holy Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wassallam) and how gracious Allah Subhanahu Watahala has been in making us of the Ummah of His Final Messenger. Thareed is a hidden pearl of At Tibb an Nabawi which many people do not know about. Try to make it at home for Iftaar and maximise the benefit by sitting on the floor with your family and eating with three fingers as our beloved Messenger did, instead of ordering your next pizza or takeaway and eating in front of the TV.

References to Thareed in the Hadeeth.

Tharid being a superior dish -

It was narrated by Abu Musa Al-Ash'ari (radhi Allahu anhu) that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said, "Many men reached perfection but none among the women reached perfection except Mary, the daughter of ' Imran, and Asia, Pharoah's wife. And the superiority of A'ishah (radhi Allahu anha) to other women is like the superiority of tharid to other kinds of food."
Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 7, Book 65, Number 329

Tharid made with gourd [squash/pumpkin] was served to the Holy Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wassallam) -

It was narrated by Anas (radhi Allahu anhu) that, "I went along with the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) to the house of a young tailor of his. The tailor presented a dish of tharid to the Prophet and resumed his work. The Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) started picking the pieces of gourd and I too, started picking them and putting it before him. Since then I have always loved (to eat) gourd."
Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 7, Book 65, Number 331

In another narration in Al Bukhari it suggests that the meat used to make the Tharid was sliced dried meat but if you cannot find dried halaal meat where you live, using normal fresh meat is fine.
Reference to dried meat in Vol. 3, Book 34, Hadith 305.

Although gourd is preferred, you can add any vegetables of your choice - potatoes, turnips, carrots, peas, spinach etc.

Tharid with Talbinah [poured over it] was prepared for the sick/grieving -

Our Mother A'ishah (radhi Allahu anha) narrated that whenever one of her relatives died, the women assembled and then dispersed (returned to their houses) except her relatives and close friends. She would order that a pot of Talbina be cooked. Then Tharid (a dish prepared from meat and bread) would be prepared and the Talbina would be poured on it. A'ishah would say (to the women),"Eat of it, for I heard Allah's Apostle (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) saying, 'The Talbina soothes the heart of the patient and relieves him from some of his sadness.' "
Sahih Al Bukhari Vol. 7, Book 65, Hadith 328

Most of the time, unleavened bread made with coarse barley flour was consumed in the time of the Holy Prophet (sallAllahu alayhi wassallam). Wheat bread was hardly ever consumed.

A'isha (radhi Allahu anha) narrated that "Never had the family of Muhammad (sallAllahu alayhi wassallam) eaten to their fill since their arrival in Medinah with the bread of wheat for three successive nights until his (the Holy Prophet's) death."
Sahih Muslim Book 42, Hadith 7083

It is my understanding that our mother meant wheat bread was an expensive luxury which was not eaten by the poor.

Either Barley or Wheat flour dough can be used to make the flatbread (roti) in Thareed depending on what you prefer and any type of halaal meat can be used for the meat soup but I would recommend boneless lamb as in the simple recipe below.

Thareed Stew Recipe.

600g lean boneless lamb cut into small pieces
1/2 bottle gourd cut into chunks

2 tablespoons of pure extra virgin olive oil
1 large sized onion, peeled and chopped finely
3/4 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger root, chopped finely
1 teaspoon of tomato puree
1 large fresh ripe tomato, chopped
Salt and black pepper to your taste. You can use a natural salt like sea salt or Himalayan pink salt.
1/4 teaspoon Turmeric
1/4 teaspoon Chilli powder
1/4 teaspoon Garam Masala powder
1/4 teaspoon Coriander seed powder
1/4 teaspoon Cumin seed powder
1 teaspoon of fresh yoghurt, homemade is best (optional)
1 and 1/2 pints of boiling water.

Handful of fresh coriander leaves and mint leaves, chopped for garnishing.

Gently bring the olive oil up to temperature, ensuring that it does not start smoking. Add the onions, garlic and ginger. Fry them until they turn lightly golden.

Then add the spices and cook the mixture for a minute to remove the raw powdery taste of the spices.

Then add the tomato puree and chopped tomato, along with salt and pepper to your taste and a little bit of water. Cook the mixture until the tomatoes have broken down to a paste and the oil starts to separate from the mixture.

Then add the meat. Turn up the heat and cook and stir the mixture to render out the moisture from the meat and brown the pieces.

Then add the boiling water and bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, turn down the heat to low and cover the pan with a lid and cook the meat for 1 and 1/2 hours or until it is tender. Or you can use a pressure cooker.

Be sure to adjust the amount of liquid in the stew by adding more boiling water if you need it.

Once the meat is tender, add the yoghurt if you are using it and the gourd pieces and cook for a further 15 mins until they are soft.

Check the seasoning and once the stew is cooked, you can turn off the heat and garnish with chopped coriander and mint.

Make a chapati/roti flat bread on a tava pan, or you can use a pitta bread. Break it up into pieces and place it in a serving bowl.

Pour the Thareed stew on top and serve it hot. 


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  2. Assalaamoalaikum. My children and making cookbooks which they will aell for $5 and raise money for the people of Syria. Can we use your recipe in it?

    1. Wa alaikum asalaam. JazakAllahu khair for seeking permission. Yes you can inshaaAllah.

  3. Assslamu alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuhu. I tried your recipe oneday with fresh halal lamb from costco. It was soooo tasty masha Allah. جزاك الله خيرا و بارك الله فيك

    1. Wa alaikum asalaam warahmatullahi wabarakatu my sister and Allah humma baarik! Your hands are natural chef's hands mashaAllah.

  4. Assalam u alikum
    I want to ask one thing which I have heard that olive oil should not be heated more than 5 minutes because it will be harmful, is it true??

    1. Wa alaikum asalaam. It should be be heated to smoking point as that will break down the beneficial nutritional components of the oil. But, it is perfectly safe to heat it gently -

    2. Sorry, it should *NOT* be heated to smoking point.

  5. Salam.
    We started to bake our own sourdough using wild yeast several weeks ago. Alhamdulillah, the quality of the loaf is improving steadily; and we're looking for compatible recipes to go along with it. This recipe seems one. T kasih


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