Do you remember the times when you were much younger, and visiting relatives’ houses during the festive season meant so much more through the eyes of a child? Much more than rekindling familial ties and finding yourself in the midst of ‘Dah besar eh dia!’ (‘She’s so big already!) comments from grannies who barely remember your name. Much more than finding yourself standing awkwardly behind older relatives hugging and crying, exchanging forgiveness over any harsh words and mistakes, wishing you weren’t next, knowing your encounter wouldn’t be half as emotionally dramatic.
Rather, visiting relatives as a child hinges on the infamous simplistic deduction of association. Associating specific persons and homes with treats, much like that second grand-uncle’s house with the generous amount of duit Raya (monetary gifts to visiting children) given, or that third cousin’s house with the large television set for playing video games; or even associating them with eye-catching details, such as the grandma who lives alone with her seemingly 99 cats, or the auntie whose house looks and sounds like a clock shop with the different cuckoo clocks and grandfather clocks going off at the same time.
– pictures courtesy of BakingLover and Ballantyne -
We interrupt the scheduled Ramadhan Baking recipe post to bring you a little public service announcement, particularly for my Muslim readers (and bakers) residing in Singapore.
Over the past couple of months, there had been quite a commotion regarding the halal certification of Golden Churn butter, a brand of butter quite popular amongst the Malay community, especially during this festive season. This was due to a finding from the Malaysian food industry, noting that the butter contained pork DNA. Whilst the issue had been clarified by Ballantyne, the company behind the brand, and thereafter been confirmed to be halal here in Singapore, a more recent investigation conducted by the Islamic Religious Council of Malaysia (JAKIM) had led the country to proclaim the butter to be of non-halal status, i.e. haram. Following the request of one of my dear blogger friends residing in Kuala Lumpur, Madame Percicilan, to spread the awareness amongst the local Muslim baking community, I decided to posit the query to our own local Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS), to hopefully clear any doubts and confusion about the two conflicting views of the brand’s halal authenticity.
The following is a statement from their representative, for your consideration.
I am well aware that it has been slightly over a month since my last post, and thanks to the kind thoughts and concern by some of my readers and blog friends who dropped me a note (you know you are), I reckon a slight nudge was all it took to get me off my rear and resume sharing my bakes. You could call it a long writer-cum-baker’s block of sorts, I guess. Anyway, adhering to the mantra ‘better late than never’, here’s wishing all my Muslim readers a blessed and joyous month of Ramadhan! It has already been well into the second week of the holy fasting month now here in Singapore, and if my Twitter timeline is anything to go by, it seems that more people are keen on baking their own sweet treats for Eid, and have already begun their own oven experiments.
It appears to be the most opportune time then to kickstart this year’s edition of Ramadhan Baking, where I share some of my own ‘Eid-bakes’ experiments, as well as household favourites.