Last September 10 and 11, we celebrated Eid ul-Fitr often abbreviated to Eid, a Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. Eid is an Arabic word meaning “festivity”, while Fiṭr means “conclusion of the fast”; and so the holiday celebrates the conclusion of the thirty days of dawn-to-sunset fasting during the entire month of Ramadan.
As the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation, Eid is known in Indonesia as Idul Fitri (or more informally as Lebaran) and is a national holiday. It is common during this period for people to engage in “mudik” activity. It is an annual tradition that people in big cities such as Jakarta (where I live), Surabaya or elsewhere, travel to their hometowns or other cities to visit relatives, to request forgiveness, or just to celebrate Eid with the whole family.
One common menu during Idulfitri is Ketupat (please see the picture above). Ketupat or packed rice is a type of dumpling from Indonesia. It is made from rice that has been wrapped in a woven palm leaf pouch and boiled. As the rice cooks, the grains expand to fill the pouch and the rice becomes compressed. During Idul Fitri in Indonesia, ketupat is often served with chicken curry, accompanied with spicy soy powder
During the recent Eid holiday, I enjoyed a full week holiday and had plenty of time to try out recipes in my kitchen. One of the interesting recipes I tried was the famously hot and spicy Manado (also known as Minahasa) cuisine called Cakalang Rabe Rica which can be translated to ‘Hot Spicy Shredded Tuna’.