Oct 13th 2007 - Eid al-Fitr "Breaking of the Fast"
When the new moon is seen in the sky, this marks the end of the Ramadan month of fasting, and a time to celebrate and thank Allah for his help with this extended fast & ability to exercise self-control. This is the first day of the 10th month in the Islamic lunar calendar (Shawwal). Food is donated to the poor (zakat) and everyone is ready to celebrate this much-anticipated day!! *I know Justin is looking forward to breaking his personal fast, and eating lunches with us again!*
Typically, the men rise early to visit their mosque for a special prayer time, with everyone wearing their finest attire. After the prayers & a special sermon, Muslims rise and greet each other with "Eid Mubarak" which means "Holiday blessings!" Women also rise early to begin preparing their menu of delicious foods for their many visitors. Throughout the day, people visit each others' homes, sharing delicious meals. It is a very joyous time to come together with loved ones. Children are often rewarded with gifts, money & sweets. Homes are adorned with lights & decorations - making the day very festive.
If the family is able - they will buy a lamb for the feasting, and make many traditional dishes to commemorate the celebration. Just as Thanksgiving is known for turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce & pumpkin pie, so Eid is known for these famous dishes: Murgh mussallam, Mrouziya, Nawab biriyani, Beef stew, Tabouli, Biryani, Mutton korma, Sheer Korma, Seviyan, Lemon pepper steak, fig& lemon chicken, lentil soup, meatballs, fig cakes, etc.
We were invited to share in the celebration with a neighbor & friend. I (Ali) hope to taste and learn how to prepare some of these cultural dishes too. I hear they are all very tasty! We will let you know how our celebration goes. I posted a new Lamb recipe, if you are brave and want to try it! See our recipe site.