Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Brunei Town

Taste of celebration

Azlan Othman

This year’s Hari Raya Aidilfitri is the third celebration since COVID-19 reached Brunei’s shores.

Bruneians are celebrating Hari Raya amid health measures in the Endemic Phase with visits limited to close family members to curb the spread of the virus.

Typically, celebrants would meet members of the extended family, whom they had not seen in a long time.

Cakes often play a prominent role in the festivities. Simply put, Raya isn’t Raya without tasty treats.

One of the must-have delicacies, found in every household, is tapak kuda – a soft and fluffy cake filled with Nutella and rolled into the shape of a horse shoe.

The ingredients for tapak kuda roll cake are: eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, butter, vanilla essence, emulsifier, butter and Nutella. It is normally kept in the fridge to maintain the Nutella flavour.

Tapak kuda is a must during Hari Raya celebrations. PHOTO: DAPURKAKNOOR.BLOGSPOT.COM
Kueh jala is also popular during Hari Raya

Home-made businesses tend to burn the midnight oil to meet the demand ahead of Hari Raya, with tapak kuda priced at around BND5-BND6 each.

However, the price of cakes and biscuits has risen with the cost increase in baking ingredients.

Speaking to the Bulletin, a home-based business owner who bakes tapak kuda, shared that the price of Nutella has increased, from BND6.99 to BND7.99. The same goes for the price of butter.

Hari Raya is also not complete without local favourites such as: lemang, which is a tube of the glutinous rice in bamboo stalk; kelupis – glutinous rice cooked in coconut milk and wrapped in fan palm leaves; beef rendang, which is beef infused with aromatic spices and coconut milk; chicken curry; serunding – shredded meat like beef and chicken which is cooked until dry; satay – pieces of meat, such as chicken, beef or lamb, skewered on a stick and grilled over charcoal to perfection and served with sliced cucumbers and a spicy peanut sauce; and kueh mor, a soft shortbread rolled in sugar.

Celebrants have always enjoyed traditional cakes during the festive season, and these days, these treats often accompany new varieties of modern cakes and biscuits in different shapes and flavours, thanks to creative and enterprising individuals.

While modern biscuits and cakes continued to appeal to the masses, classic Raya cakes, such as kueh sapit, bahulu, kueh jala and kueh cincin, are hard to beat.