Breakfast on Eid ul-Fitr

21 September 2009

Eid ul-Fitr is the day marking the end of Ramadan for Muslims. Eid is one of the most important days for Muslims, similar to Christmas for Christians.

Breakfast isn’t eaten until the men return from the mosque for festival prayers at around 8:30 am. Today was a fairly typical breakfast for Eid ul-Fitr or other special occasions.

Starting at the upper left corner are the short stubby bananas, kolikuttu bananas, which are considered to be the best bananas. They’re sweet and flavourful.

Just below and to the left of the bananas is a bowl of Pol Sambol. Pol Sambol is an absolutely delightful dish and one of my all-time favourite foods. It’s a mix of freshly shredded coconut with Maldive fish flakes, red chilli pepper powder, salt, lime juice, and onion. Fahim’s mom always makes extra when I’m around since she knows how much I love it. 🙂

To Pol Sambol’s right is a white stein filled with a syrup made from coconut milk and jaggery. This is for the, ah, dessert portion of breakfast. And yes, it’s good stuff!

Just below the stein are the string hoppers. This time, we got the string hoppers from outside, or from a vendor somewhere – Fahim dealt with that. String hoppers are made from rice flour, in this case red rice flour, although white rice flour can also be made. The dough is pressed through a device with tiny holes to let strings of the dough out and onto a bamboo woven round mat. The string hoppers, mats and all, then go into a pot and steam until they’re cooked. Fahim’s mom makes better string hoppers, but they’re a lot of work.

To the right of the string hoppers is a bowl filled with hodi, a yellow liquid. We frequently have bittera hodi, which is eggs in the gravy. This gravy is not like North Americans think of gravy – it’s more like a thin sauce. Hodi is made from coconut milk with turmeric, red chilli powder, salt, onions, tomatoes, and green chillies added. Fahim’s mom makes a great hodi. This hodi came with the string hoppers and wasn’t as good.

Below the string hoppers and hodi is a bowl with chicken curry, made yesterday.

And the hand you see spooning out the yellow hodi is Fahim’s. 🙂

First, string hoppers are eaten with the chicken curry, pol sambol, and hodi. The string hoppers are mashed with the hands and the other items are mixed in before you pop it in your mouth. All eaten with hands, of course. Generally, in their own homes, Sri Lankans eat with their hands. 🙂

Then, after the first bit is done, more string hoppers hit the plate along with a banana and the jaggery/coconut milk syrup is poured over top. The banana is mashed into the string hoppers and then you pop them into your mouth. At the end, you slurp up whatever syrup is left over.

Other entries about Eid ul-Fitr:

Tags: Eid ul-Fitr, , Sri Lankan cuisine,

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5 Responses

  1. #1
    Zameena Roth 

    assalamu alaikum, was looking up tips on mayo,when i found ur blog.Its very nice 🙂 lol, Your writing sounds like my mum-in-law thinking out loud; she is australian,and everything about SL fascinates her.My husband’s a convert. Glad you’re enjoying Ceylon. salaams.

  2. #2

    Welcome to my blog, Zameena, and thanks for commenting. 🙂

    I’m going to take the comparison to your mom-in-law as a compliment. 😀 Tell her I like her already. 😉

  3. #3
    Zameena Roth 

    You’r welcome 🙂
    Hehe,it was a compliment, I love my Mum,she is an awesome person.
    the similarity in our lives is such a weird coincidence 😛 almost “supernatural” weird. tc.

  4. #4
    Kate Brown Wilson 

    Seems that your really enjoy that meal, i hope that you can share its recipe for me to try it on.

  1. […] The day begins with showers, then wearing new clothes when possible. The men will go to mosque around 7:30 am for the special sermon and prayer and will return around 8:30 am. At that time, the family has breakfast. […]

About LMAshton

Howdy and welcome to my site! I'm Laurie and I'll be your, er, hostess today. :)

I'm a Canadian expat currently living in Singapore. I'm married to a Sri Lankan and lived in Sri Lanka for nearly a decade. We also lived in New Zealand for half a year.

I cook Sri Lankan curries, sambols, and mallungs. I bake bread using wild yeast (sourdough that isn't sour). I bake on the stove. I experiment with Indian / Malaysian / Indonesian / Thai / whatever cuisines interest me. And I experiment wildly.

Life is an adventure. Join me! :)

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