Thursday, November 03, 2005

# Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri!

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri! Happy Eid!

After a month of Ramadhan (Fasting month), this is the day which mark the culmination of the holy month, the day of the celebration of the Muslim New Year.

During the fasting month, muslims abstain from eating and drinking daily between sunrise and sunset. Smoking and sexual relations are also forbidden during fasting. At the end of the day people break fast with a prayer and a meal called iftar.

Side note: Fasting during Ramadhan is one of the five tenets/ pillars of Islam:
1) Syahada (Belief in one God)
2) Salat (Five times prayer a day)
3) Zakat (Almsgiving)
4) Siyam (Fasting during Ramadhan)
5) Hajj (Pilgrimage to Mecca)

After a month-long fasting, Muslims celebrate Id-al-Fitr (the Feast of Fast Breaking), we called it Aidilfitri in Malaysia, which is the first day of the month of Syawal. Aidilfitri signifies the spirit of forgiving and family reunion. In Malaysia, people from cities 'balik kampung' to reunite with their familities in hometown. During this time, people ask for each other's pardon and forgiveness for whatever past quarrels, by salam (handshake) and kissing the hands of the elders as a sign of respect.

On the first day of Aidilfitri, muslims congregates at mosques for morning prayers. I passed by the East London Mosque which is situated near my house last year, and the voices of prayers from the mosque sounded so homely, I felt I am back to Malaysia.

What I love about Hari Raya Puasa in Malaysia is the culture of Open House, and visits from house to house to wish one another "Selamat Hari Raya". The place I stayed in Malaysia is in a Malay community, hence we enjoyed visiting our neighbours and exchanging gifts and cookies during Raya. I particularly love the ketupat (triangular shaped rice cake) with rendang!

Putting up my baju kurung (Malay Traditional clothes for female), I am ready to pay visits to my Malay friends and wish them




@ロウ 。LOW@ said...

Nice one, yd! Both the post and you in baju kurung :p

Pandabonium said...

I agree with Low.

As for the fasting month I could go along with not smoking.....

Pandabonium said...

As to food, I've not had randang. Is it always made with beef and chili? Panda and K have a hard time with hot spices, and Panda's are not meat eaters. Would it offend anyone if we substitued tofu for the beef and used just a pinch of chili? The other ingredients in the recipes I have found sound great.

Perhaps when you visit us you will teach us in the kitchen? In return, I know a Japanese chef who could "shoyu" (show you) a thing or two. hehehe..

Seriously, we have neighbors in Fiji who are Hindu and with whom we have dined. A lot of people in Fiji are Hindo and we'd like to learn to cook some of their dishes and adapt them to our palates.

Anyway, nice post.

YD said...

Rendang is normally made with beef and chilli. But we can substitute beef with chicken too! (oops. just realized that chicken is categorized as MEAT too. haha)

Would be delighted to cook curry for you when i visit you! I will have to make sure I bring all the ingredients and herbs. :-) Wow... learning from a japanese chef.. it would be maaarrrrveelllooouusss!

Hindu people cook great curry, and lots of nice cuisine. how lucky you are!