What exactly is Halal Food? Halal is an Arabic word that translates to ¨permisible.¨ It adheres to the Islamic law and guidelines which comes from the teaching of the Quran. The Muslim community who follows the practices of Islam may discuss the hard difficulty of eating outside in such western culture that may not provide these proper guidelines for one to be able to access. But as of recent times, the community has seen a big difference in recent restaurants that have opened up within these boroughs in NY that are halal certified and provide the best tasteful food.
Places one may check out and can visit is ¨Halalbee´s¨ as they make the most filling and tasteful types of burger sandwiches, another spot in Queens is ¨Hot Peppers” who are known for their amazing halal tacos and burrito bowl that is freshly made in front of your eyes.
Since Korean corn dogs have been trendy food, now Muslims can enjoy and be part of trying this tasteful trend by visiting ¨Holy Cow¨ and enjoying their halal corn dogs which serve hot dogs and mozzarella in breadcrumbs and then deep-fried. You can choose your specific type of filling but don´t forget to top it off with their spicy mayo!
To take it to the next level, there have been various types of halal-certified restaurants in NY that individuals may check out by visiting with family and friends. Restaurants that include halal-certified food are Jade Eatery which is not only extremely beautiful looking as you may sit by a big tank of the water fountain and fishes that are divine looking… of course, their food as well is appetizing and well served. I got to visit this restaurant and ordered steamed dumplings, tacos, garlic-naan bread, and butter chicken with rice on the side. It was also pretty to see how they topped the dishes with a purple-looking flower which enhances the food’s beauty.
Another restaurant is located in Astoria and is called, ¨The Gully.” It includes modern Indian cuisine which I was able to try there ¨Dum Biryani¨ which has rice inside once you cut open xthe roti bread. Appetizers like their “Pani Puri” should be given a try as well as their fruity drinks on the side. I ordered ¨Chicken Karahi¨ and ate it with rice on the side as well as Garlic bread-naan. It was very filling and the restaurant was decorated with fine arts of south- Asian culture.
When I had got to sit down and interviewed Ms. Siddiqa she discussed the importance of having these halal food opening up here in more recent times in NY. She said ¨practicing Muslims do not want to eat anything but Halal food and it becomes a challenge when we cannot eat anything recommended in our faith.¨
Ms. Siddiqa recommended the best for students to access halal food is ¨cart food that is regularly available.” Azerbaijan Grill is halal certified she had recommended herself and is a Mediterranean restaurant located in Westbury, NY. Ms. Siddiqa had added that there have been more openings of halal restaurants compared to how it was 5-10 years ago.
¨Knowledge has increased, Muslims are more now comfortable in practicing their faith more openly because mosques have opened up and have become easier.¨ She added that even non-Muslims would rather have halal food since it is considered as ¨clean¨ because of the way it is processed under Islamic regulations.
Ms. Siddiqa explained when she had done her undergraduate in Boston there were only two halal restaurants and when there was no food that she needed to have that was halal the only one that was presented to her was ¨Kosher meat¨ and was asked if she preferred that. She was not, since kosher and halal food are two separate meanings. So overall, times have changed and improved for the better allowing Muslims to have more and more access to various types of food that are Halal certified.