Eid-Ul-Fitr marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan and is one of the most important celebrations among people of muslim faith. After attending the early morning prayers, families gather to exchange gifts and sweets. This is followed by a festive lunch for which preparations start right from the eve of the festival itself as soon as the sighting of the moon is officially confirmed.
Houses are cleaned, new clothes are bought, elaborate mehendi designs are applied by the women and traditional as well as exotic dishes are prepared including the vermicelli pudding – poudine vermicelle or sewai – a sweet dish served to all family members on Eid. I remember from my childhood days that the poudine was also shared among neighbours and friends but this is not commonly seen nowadays. So I made my own hoping that it matches the taste of the sewai my muslim friends used to send on the occasion of Eid.
250 g vermicelli
50 g butter or ghee
1/4 cup caster sugar
5 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick
1/8 cup raisins
1/8 cup blanched almonds
1 1/2 cups water or milk
2 tbs dessicated coconut
- Roast vermicelli over low heat until it turns a few shades darker. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Melt butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Add cinnamon, cardamom, raisins and almonds and stir for a minute.
- Add water to this mixture of spices and bring to the boil. Then add sugar and mix until it dissolves to form a syrup.
- Stir in vermicelli. Cook over low heat stirring occasionally until most of the water evaporates and mixture leaves sides of pan.
- Pour mixture into a buttered pan and leave to set to room temperature for at least 4 hours before cutting into squares.
- Garnish with lightly toasted dessicated coconut if desired. Keeps fresh for a couple of days in the refrigerator.