Posted on: Sunday 19 August, 2012 10:01
|A sweet tradition adds color to festival
Eid sweets are considered among the most important hospitality items served in every home in Saudi Arabia during the festival. Saudis serve candies throughout the holiday as part of celebrating this annual religious event. Providing sweets for Eid is as important as purchasing incense and a special thobe (national dress) for the occasion.
The sweets are put in beautifully decorated containers and kept on tables in the salon to serve to the guests upon arrival while exchanging Eid greetings.
Saad Al-Harthy, one of the famous merchants who sells candies in Jeddah, said Saudis usually prefer to buy their sweets and crackers a week before the advent of Eid. “Saudis are very meticulous in buying sweets during the last week of Ramadan so as to have them handy to serve to visitors and well wishers,” he said.
Al-Harthy said children loved to eat sweets during Eid, considering the act part of the Eid celebration. He said people usually bought the Italian and Turkish chocolates because they were of the highest quality, and at the same time reasonably priced, with a kilogram ranging between SR 70 and SR 90. “This chocolate comes raw from these two countries and we fill it with crackers or biscuits here,” he added.
Al-Harthy said the Swiss and Belgian chocolate is very expensive, with a kilogram ranging between SR 100 and SR 150. “This chocolate comes from Switzerland and Belgium already filled with nuts, crackers or biscuits so it is expensive,” he explained.
Al-Harthy said there are many other kinds of sweets which are sold at SR 25 or SR 35 a kilo maximum. He said these sweets are made of almonds, peanuts, apricots, raisins, pine nuts and various others.
He said the Saudis also serve a special meal called Dibyaza for breakfast during the Eid holiday. The Dibyaza is a national dish made primarily with dates and other dried fruits.
Khaled Al-Amoudi, a Saudi, said for him Eid sweets were an important component of Eid itself. “I do not feel the happiness and joy of Eid in the absence of sweets,” he said.
Al-Amoudi noted that both old and young people were served with sweets as hospitality at every house they went to exchange felicitations on the occasion. “Visitors may feel insulted if they are not served with sweets the moment they arrive in any Saudi house to exchange Eid greetings,” he said.