What I’m Serving this Eid

August 17th, 2012

Tomorrow I will begin preparing my date-filled ma’amoul. I make these pastries every Eid and only at Eid time, something I have been doing for many years. Mine are made with an all-flour dough (no semolina), which is not so different from American pie dough… aside from the rose water. I load them with high-quality dates and stamp them out with a mold.

For some Eids, I have made more than a hundred of these little babies. You can find my step-by-step recipe for date-filled ma’amoul here.

Meanwhile, last year for the first time I stepped out of my rut tradition and made nut-filled ma’amoul—which I love just as much, especially the pistachio-filled pastries (below).

Then again, the walnut-filled ma’amoul (below) are pretty swell, too. You can find my illustrated recipe for nut-filled ma’amoul here.

This year I plan to make loads of ma’amoul to put in tins and give to neighbors and the men who run the dukan (little grocery store) by my house. I will also serve them to guests who come to my home over the Eid holiday— friends and my husband’s family. But what to serve the ma’amoul with?

Arabic coffee, of course!

I’m not talking about dark Turkish coffee, but the pale coffee served in tiny handle-less cups, made from greenish coffee beans and scented with cardamom, rose water and saffron. This is the standard welcoming beverage served in Dubai and the Arabian Gulf (with some regional variations). It’s the classic Eid beverage, elegantly served in an Arabian-style thermal flask. You can find my recipe for Arabic coffee here.

In addition to nuts, fruit and fatayer, I’m going to serve something new: rose lemonade—just to have something different up my sleeve. Find the easy recipe for rose lemonade here.

I also plan to prepare and serve date truffles (below) as an Eid sweet for the first time this year. After I stuff myself with ma’amoul, I can switch to this (somewhat) healthier option. Find the date truffle recipe is here.

So far, I’ve only mentioned food served to guests. We also have a tradition for breakfast on the first morning of Eid. For me, the high point is American coffee and homemade cinnamon rolls. I prep the cinnamon rolls the night before (typically around midnight) and put them in the oven Eid morning. You can find the recipe I use for Overnight Cinnamon Rolls from Williams and Sonoma.

Yes, I admit, my Eid is very heavy on the sweets and desserts. What about the main course, you might be wondering… Well, that we eat in a restaurant!

Question: What are you preparing/serving/eating/drinking this Eid?

  1. Andrea
    August 17th, 2012 at 03:14 | #1

    Nice cookie gift box!!

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 18th, 2012 at 01:39 | #2

      Hi Andrea,
      About the gift box … My only regret is I wish I bought more! I should have bought their entire stock. They were inexpensive and perfect for Eid giving. I’ve noticed it’s hard to find simple tins around Dubai. (Unless they are Christmas tins) Happy Eid to you & your family!

  2. August 17th, 2012 at 07:30 | #3

    OK, drool!!!! I’m printing these recipes up as fast as my printer can go!!!

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 18th, 2012 at 01:37 | #4

      Hi Natalie,
      You’ll have to tell me what you decide to bake & how it turns out. Please send any questions my way. BTW, the ma’amoul is also prepared at Easter in the Middle East, too. Happy baking & cooking!

  3. Deborah Mustafa
    August 17th, 2012 at 11:55 | #5

    Salaam Holly!

    You are such an inspiration! I love how you carry on with your traditions year after year. Your pictures are beautiful, capturing the festive holiday spirit. Personally, I have a hard time sticking to the same thing, as I tend to get bored and want to venture on to something new. As for this year…well you left me with some no fail recipes…hmmm maybe I’l start with cinnamon rolls 🙂
    Eid Mubarak!

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 18th, 2012 at 01:36 | #6

      Hi Deborah, Thanks for your kind words. They mean a lot. Tell me how the cinnamon rolls turn out. Wishing you & your family a joyful Eid.

  4. August 18th, 2012 at 00:23 | #7

    Eid Mubarak Holly!! All your pictures are beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing all of those recipes.

    After 7 years of marriage and 5 years of being interested in baking, I finally made my very own maamoul. I used your recipe! At iftar I broke my fast on one of my date filled maamoul because I was dying to see how it tasted. They were so yummy! The crumb was perfect. My only wish is that the dough had a bit of a sweetness to it. Do you have any recommendations of how I can make that possible? Not cookie sweet, just a touch. I’d like to make more today.

    Again thank you so much for sharing your family recipe. I truly appreciate it.

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 18th, 2012 at 01:21 | #8

      Hi Amnah!!
      So glad they turned out! About the sweetness: Well. As you know, Arabic sweets are just not as sweet as, for example, American sweets. One thing to do is coat the ones you’ve already made more heavily in powdered sugar. For your next batch, you can add more sugar to the nut filling (I prefer the texture of powdered sugar). Some of the women in my husband’s family even add ‘atar (scented simple syrup) to the nut filling. Some people cook the dates on the stove with sugar. I’ve never done this, as I think the dates are sweet enough & it adds one more messy step. I don’t recommend adding sugar to the dough (unless it’s just a few tablespoons). It may not stick together and bake the way it’s supposed to. Also, you may want to add more filling so the ma’amoul is less pastry & more sweetened filling. I hope that helps. Wishing you & your family a joyful Eid…. P.S. I love your blog Little Life of Mine. 🙂

  5. August 18th, 2012 at 15:03 | #9

    I have yet to try a home-made ma’amoul, only had store bought. Can’t wait to bake them myself.

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 18th, 2012 at 15:35 | #10

      HI Abigail, Thanks for stopping by. Eid Mubarak & Happy Baking. 😉

  6. gwen
    August 19th, 2012 at 23:47 | #11

    @Holly S. Warah
    Holly I love your site. Where oh where did you purchase this tin?

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 20th, 2012 at 01:57 | #12

      Hi Gwen, I purchased this tin at Tavola (a gourmet cooking store) in Dubai a few years back. It is actually a Christmas tin, but has a Holy Land theme, which works for Eid. I have not seen them again… Unfortunately, it has no label or brand name. 🙁

  7. August 20th, 2012 at 19:33 | #13

    Eid Mubarak! Everything looks so delicious. Your Rose Lemonade has SUCH a beautiful color! I wish you and your family much happiness this Eid.

    • Holly S. Warah
      Holly S. Warah
      August 20th, 2012 at 22:17 | #14

      Thanks, Molly. Happy Eid to you, too. I used a combination of the two rose syrups to achieve that hot pink color. 🙂

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