Fahmida Choonara | email@example.com
23 March 2023 | 15:00 CAT
3 min read
Brother Abdul Gani, the owner of Amina’s Wonder Dates, spoke to Radio Islam International about dates, his foray into the business world and the creation of Amina’s Wonder Dates.
Gani decided to gift his clients with dates, and in 2004 he travelled to Namibia, where he first imported dates for retail. He began his business in his garage at home, but as his business increased, he opened his first retail store in 2010, importing dates from Saudi Arabia, Namibia and other countries.
The date is a nutrient-rich fruit that grows on tall date palms. According to Gani, dates originated more than 8 thousand years ago, and today there are more than 200 varieties.
Commonly found in the Middle East, the USA, and Northern Africa, date palms take 5 to 7 years to grow and provide fruit for up to 120 years.
The fruit is delicious and wholesome, each with its form, origin, unique taste & texture. Dates are classified as Sunnah food as they were loved and eaten by the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him), who said they could cure many ailments and benefit health.
Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Indeed in dates, there is a cure” [Muslim], and we can see today – as the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) taught us – that consuming dates helps support an overall healthy body and mind. (Muslim)
Gani further explained that dates generate in stages—the first stage of big, olive-like, and light-coloured, like other fruit. The second stage gives the fruit an apple/pear-like texture with a white inside. Lastly, the Rutab stage is when the inside is soft, moist, prune textured and brownish.
Storing dates is tricky, and Gani explained that dates are naturally dehydrated fruit that needs to be stored differently depending on their moisture content.
Dates that are soft and moist should be kept frozen; those with dry skins but soft insides must be refrigerated or frozen; and dry dates with low moisture can be kept at room temperature.
Plump, reddish brown and fibrous texture, Medjool dates are the most popular dates in Morocco, Palestine, and Saudia Arabian regions.
Bahri dates are smaller, oval-shaped, sweet and creamy tasting, and grown mainly in Iraq.
Everyone likes dates; most prefer the more oversized soft textured, and others opt for the smaller, dryer, yet sweet and creamy dates.
This Ramadan, keep the sunnah of the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) by including dates in your iftaar.
It was narrated that Anas ibn Maalik (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) used to break his fast with fresh dates before praying. If there were no fresh dates, then with dried dates, and if there were no dried dates, then with a few sips of water. Ahmad (12265); Abu Dawood, 2356.
To listen to the interview with Ml. Sulaimaan Ravat and Abdul Gani on Sabahul Muslim here.