EID-UL-FITR DOWN MEMORY LANE
In Kochi, just outside the Thrikkakara municipality, there is an area by the name of Kakkanad. How did this name come about? In Malayalam, a Muslim man is lovingly called ‘Kaka’, and ‘Naadu’ is a place/town/village. Over the years, this little pincode bustled with Muslim settlers, most of them with thriving businesses that helped the village flourish. Today, the village is touted as one of the most cosmopolitan parts of Kochi with the InfoPark, proximity to the airport and most recently, connectivity to the Kochi Metro.
So, what’s got me all nostalgic about Kakkanad today?
It is Eid. And if I were in Kochi today, I would be milling outside the masjid in Kakkanad awaiting my turn at the iftar counter. Porotta, pathiri, an assortment of non-vegetarian curries and payassums that’ll have you go back for seconds and thirds – just thinking about this has my mouth watering and my heart aching for the familiar comfort of home.Every evening in the month of Ramzan, as a part of breaking the fast, tables at home are laden with a variety of meats, sweets, beverages, and everyone’s favourite BIRYANI! Just like in Kakkanad, shamiyanas are erected outside masjids with home-chefs and caterers setting up stalls of delicious iftar. I remember going to my friend, Asifa's house, every Sunday during Ramzan. Asifa would have all her school friends over for lunch. Her family home had the longest dining table I’ve ever seen. Every inch of the table would be covered with food.
The month of Ramzan is by far my favourite time of the year. And it’s not just because of the food. Well, that is one of the main reasons, of course! But Ramzan also brings together people of all faiths. And this is essentially what the festival aims to fortify – peace and the sentiment of brotherhood. It strives to impart the importance of being good, practicing kindness, abstinence (from everything evil) and devotion.
Eid-Ul-Fitr heralds the end of the month-long Ramzan. Celebrated in the month of Shawwal, Ramzan was started by Prophet Muhammad. It is believed that Muhammad was bestowed with sacred knowledge through the month and as a mark of respect and gratitude to Allah, he asked his followers to celebrate Ramzan by fasting from dawn to dusk, along with prayers and austerities.
Like in 2020, this Eid will also be celebrated amid regulations of social distancing. But the aromas of fresh mutton biryani and sevaiyan act as warm hugs of comfort, assurance and most importantly togetherness.Eid Mubarak, everyone!
May today’s iftar bring the best of flavours to your life.
What is your favourite memory of Ramzan? Share with us.
---- Priyanka ----