A kitten adopted us this Ramadan. I wasn’t eager to take in another cat but one should feed a hungry guest, what more during the fasting month.
Hari Raya Eidil Fitri without lemang is like thanksgiving without a turkey. Tag along as Hajjah Maznah makes a batch of superb steamed lemang from scratch.
The fasting month is proceeding apace. This year, I have three children fasting from dawn to dusk, KakUda is fasting from dawn till when she returns from school, and Andak is fasting from breakfast all the way to lunch. With so many earnest young fasters, the iftar spread is of vital importance to bolster their […]
Working under the hot tropical sun can take a lot out of you. Within minutes, sweat flows freely and before long you become drenched. Taking clothes off doesn’t help at all; in fact, it just exposes you more to the sun’s rays. Laborers will work dressed from ankle to wrist, often with a balaclava over […]
A ubiquitous icon of the Ramadan season is Ketupat. Ketupat is to Hari Raya what candy canes and tinsel are to Christmas: innocuous, non-religious cultural symbols that are inextricably linked to the holiday. Images of ketupat are plastered on greeting cards, banners, cut-shots between TV programs, and so on. Decorative ketupats made of ribbon are […]
It may resemble an ice sculpture or some kind of high tech snowman, but it is in fact the heart of the coconut palm, or umbut in Malay, the growing part at the top of the coconut tree from which all the fronds develop and emerge. It is smooth, shiny and pure white. I’ve heard […]
When I was a kid, I remember my father bringing home a coconut once or twice as a novelty. He used a screwdriver to knock a hole in one of the three dark spots at the end of the coconut, then drained the milky liquid into a cup. After we had shared the drink, he […]
[dropcap]W[/dropcap]e visited my late father-in-law’s grave on Eid al-Fitr to read Ya Sin and pray on his behalf. This is a common practice on the Eid, maybe because families are gathered together at that time. He was buried only about a kilometer from our village. The cemetery was so humble and unassuming. Graves were marked by […]