Answered by: Maulana Ishaaq Hussain
Is it Sunnah to eat something sweet? Especially to eat a local dish in Pakistan called Halwa?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Sayyidah Ayshah Radiyallahu anha said that the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam loved sweet and honey. (Sahih Bukhari 5431 & Tirmidhi 1838).
Sayyidah Ayshah Radiyallahu anha has related that the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam had a liking for vinegar, olive oil, sweets and honey. (Zaad- ul- Ma’aad).
In Arabic the word ‘halwa‘refers to all those sweet dishes which consist of sugar (i.e. sweetness), butter, fat, oil, or grease. In Urdu, we call this Halwa also (what you referred to in the question). While other scholars are of the view that every sweet dish no matter what is known as Halwa. (Kanzul Mutawaari p.64 v.19, Mazaahirul Haq p.87 v.4)
Imam Khattabi has mentioned that what is mentioned above in the Hadeeth with regards to Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam liking sweets was not one of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallams personal desires to always eat sweet dishes, in other words, Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam’s habit was not always to eat sweet dishes, but rather when Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam would sit for dinner, and something sweet would be put in front of him, then Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam would eat it with so much joy that it would be known to the people around him, that this was liked by Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam. (Ibid)
It is well known that to act upon the habits and life of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam is a means of reward.
Therefore if one was to like Halwa (meaning mentioned above) solely for this reason that Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam liked it then insha Allah he would have acted upon a Sunnah, hence, rewarded by Allah (SWA).
Only Allah Knows Best
Written by Maulana Ishaaq Hussain
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham