More Rice Cakes After Idul Fitri? Why Not!
Jakarta. You wouldn't believe it, but Indonesian Muslims didn't use to eat rice cakes during Idul Fitri. The delicacy, called ketupat, used to appear on dinner tables only seven days later, during Lebaran Ketupat, or "Rice Cake Idul Fitri."
The tradition is no longer popular in Indonesia, but is being revived in some regions. On Wednesday, the official day of Lebaran Ketupat, Muslims all over the country celebrated the tradition in a variety of ways – riding a hot air balloon, joining a panjat pinang contest (climbing a slippery pole to claim prizes), or feeding ketupat to hungry cows.
After all that, it was time to eat the soft, fluffy rice cakes! They are most commonly served as a rice substitute in traditional dishes like soto ayam (chicken soup) or pecel (vegetable salad with peanut sauce).
In some parts of Indonesia, though, the rice cakes themselves are replaced with something more local. In Gorontalo on the island of Sulawesi, Lebaran Ketupat is the time for dodol (toffee) and nasi jaha (sticky rice cooked in bamboo).