After a month of fasting, we celebrate with what we were deprived of most during Ramadan: food.
As Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the fasting month for Muslims worldwide. People will be coming together to celebrate the momentous occasion with their family and friends. So what can the vast variety of cultures around the world offer us in this month of celebration? Each country has a special dish that is favoured the most during Shawwal. So, let’s find out what the best loved Eid dishes around the world are!
In Afghanistan, Eid is celebrated with this savoury dish called Bolani. It is said that in this particular country, Eid fixates its importance towards the children. Parents prepare special festivities for their children on the first night of Eid with a nation favourite, Bolani. The dish consists of nutritious flatbreads stuffed with vegetables such as spinach, potatoes, lentils, chives or leeks. Normally, they are baked or fried, and can be served with either plain or mint yogurt.
Kahk, or cookies, in Arabic is a family favourite in Egypt. They indulge in this honey-filled butter cookie during the Eid celebration. The cookies are made with a sweet mixture of ghee, honey, walnuts and sesame seeds. It is said that these traditional cookies date back to the time of the Pharoahs. It is no wonder that these are great to serve during Eid as kahk has such a delicate texture that dissolves in the mouth.
Popular in several countries in Central Asia, sheer khurma is a festival traditional dish made up of warm, sweet vermicelli milk. Added in to improve the taste are dates and raisins, spiced with cardamom and saffron. Sheer khurma is considered to be one of the most popular and auspicious Eid dishes found in Afghanistan, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The delicious, coconut-saturated, spicy meat dish is traditionally prepared for festive occasions such as weddings and Eid-al-Fitr. Extremely popular in Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia and Singapore, the dish is enjoyed with white rice and looked forward to in open houses. It gets its unique taste due to the red meat pieces being slowly cooked in coconut milk and spices until almost all of the liquid is gone, allowing the meat to absorb the condiments.
A symbol of Eid in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia, ketupat is a compressed glutinous rice cake, often served in Malay open houses on Eid festive occasions. It is typically packed inside a woven, diamond-shaped container of palm leaves. The rice is half-cooked in coconut milk and is great to be eaten with beef rendang.
Dumplings have spread its popularity throughout Russia as well as Central Asian settlers. These dumplings are stuffed with seasoned lamb or beef and has been a staple inclusion of Eid feasts in Russia. By boiling or steaming the manti, it surely becomes a delectable favourite, especially if it’s prepared with tasty garlic-yogurt sauce, or vinegar chili sauce.
During Eid, a Muslim household in China will usually prepare you xiang, a deep-fried flour-based snack right after their visits to the elderly. This food is often presented with soup or rice and served symbolically for the morning of Eid.
A tremendously popular cuisine originating from South Asia, biryani is a mixed rice dish. It is extremely popular among Muslims of the Indian subcontinent. Spices and condiments are used to make the rice dish, such as cloves, coriander, ginger, onions and tomatoes. Accompanied with the rice is the prime ingredient of chicken or lamb, which of course, no one can ever resist eating.
As the people of Sudan celebrate their Eid by visiting their neighbours, families will always enjoy a plate of aseeda. This is considered to be a main dish enjoyed during Eid al-Fitri. Made of wheat flour, butter or honey can be added to sweeten cuisine. Described to be a simple, yet rich dish, the aseeda is often served and eaten during religious holidays such as Eid.
After a month of fasting, it comes to no surprise that celebrations of feasts are encouraged, especially with family and friends. What better way to catch up and forgive each other over delicious food?