Why Do We Celebrate Eid with Traditional Food? (+Fattah Recipe)

Happiness is one of the positive effects of eating one’s favorite food.  No one can deny that just eating a yummy meal is able to boost one’s mood all day long, especially when we share it with loved ones. 

Eating and joyfully sharing food with others definitely sets a mood during Islamic holidays. Currently, the Islamic world is gearing up to welcome the Festival of Sacrifice and Feasting (Eid al-Adha), which marks the end of the pilgrimage (Hajj) to Mecca

Prophet Muhammad said describing the days of Eid, “The days of Tashriq are the days of eating and drinking.” Therefore fasting during those days are definitely prohibited. 

The four-day feast begins exactly on the 10th of Dhu Al Hijjah, the last month in the Islamic calendar. 

On that day, Muslims start celebrating by offering a special prayer (Salat Al- Eid) that consists of two units (two Raqa’a) followed by a short sermon in which the Imam usually reminds the attendees of Allah’s uncountable blessings and tells them the story of the Prophet Ibrahim and his son, Isma’il (peace be upon them), who was ransomed with a lamb.

After offering the Eid prayer, it is time to offer sacrifices, which are typically a lamb, following the way of Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him). 

After finishing the animal sacrifice ritual and giving a share of it to poor people and those who are in need, the time of family gathering at the dining table comes.  Different dishes of meat are served on all Muslims’ dining tables at that time. 

All the women race with one another, decorating their tables with the most delicious meat dishes.  Each woman has her own secret recipe that makes her dish yummy and special.  Even at restaurants, meat is the main dish.  

Many traditional dishes, based on meat, differ from country to country; for example, in the Arab region, Fattah is the most famous traditional dish that adorns dining tables in many countries, and each country has its own special method to cook Fattah.  The Egyptian method is one of the most famous methods worldwide.  

Why Do We Celebrate Eid with Traditional Food? (+Fattah Recipe) - About Islam

Here is how to prepare the Egyptian traditional dish of Eid al-Adha:

Fattah

What you need

  • 1 kg of white rice.
  • 3 loaves of flatbread.
  • 50 ml of vinegar.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • 10 tablespoons of natural ghee (you can use cooking butter or oil instead.)
  • 100 g of minced garlic.
  • 2 onions.
  • 1 kg of meat cubes.
  • ½ kg of fresh tomatoes.

How to cook 

Step 1

Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the chopped onion followed by the meat cubes.  Stir together until the color of the meat begins to change.  Season with salt, pepper, and other preferred spices.  Add water until it covers the meat.  Cover the pot and wait until the meat is cooked.

Step 2

After the meat is done, pick the meat cubes and put the broth aside.  In a large pan, heat 2 tablespoons of ghee.  Add the boiled meat cubes.  Fry until the color changes.

Step 3

Into another large pot, pour in the meat broth.  Add the rice and 3 tablespoons of ghee.  Stir together; once the broth is about to be absorbed completely by the rice, cover the pot and turn the heat down.  Cook for about 30 minutes.

Step 4

In an average pot, heat 1 tablespoon of ghee over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and stir until fragrant. Next pour in the vinegar, then the tomato juice. Add salt and pepper. Cook until it becomes a thick sauce.

Step 5

In an oven pan, cut 3 loaves of flatbread into equal small pieces.  Add ¼ cup of oil and mix together well . Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes. 

Step 6

It is serving time!  Bring an extra-large plate.  Place a layer of the golden crispy fried bread on the plate, then cover it with a layer of the white rice, then pour the fragrant tomato sauce on top of the rice.   Finally, arrange the meat cubes neatly around the rice in an attractive manner.