Day of Feasting: Eid ul-Fitr

Eid mubarak! The Jewish high holidays and Rosh Hashanah are not the only feast days being celebrated this week, as many of you pointed out. Eid ul-Fitr is being celebrated today by North American Muslims (it was celebrated in other parts of the world yesterday). Now, Eid is a fascinating and irresistible holiday for anyone interested in food; it involves feasting like you've hardly ever seen!

The feast marks the end of Ramadan - a month-long fast. During Ramadan observant Muslims do not eat or drink from sun-up to sundown. On Eid families get up early, go to the mosque for a short prayer, and then return home to a lavish breakfast and lunch. The food is delicious and plentiful in a way that can only be appreciated after a fast. It has similarities in this sense to an Orthodox Easter, which breaks a vegan fast on Easter morning with all sorts of meats, cheeses, and rich desserts.

What is eaten during Eid? The food is all very important, as you can imagine. It varies from country to country.

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Above you can see a typical Malaysian spread on Eid morning. It includes satay, rendang, and "The Very Famous Pudding." We're dying to know more about a pudding bearing that title. Rendang, a rich curry, is a very common Eid dish in Asia. You can find a similar recipe here at The Kitchn:

Malaysian Beef Curry

At the top of the post is another Malaysian sweet: almond London cookies. You can find a recipe for these here:

Almond London Cookies

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Here is an Eid dish from India - a sweet made with vermicelli noodles. In India, Africa, and the Middle East, this sort of sweet is common, as is the layered rice dish of biryani.

Biryani is utterly wonderful - here's a recipe to try:

Biryani

Here is one more Indian sweet we love:

Carrot Halwa

More on Eid food traditions at the BBC, with a recipe for Klaicha, a date-filled pastry

Are you celebrating Eid? How did you break your fast? What sorts of dishes are traditional in your household?

(Images: Flickr member deqalb, Flickr member My Life Story, and Flickr member code martial - all licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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