GOSHT ON OUR MIND

With prepa­ra­tions for Bakri Eid on in full swing, we take a look at the sig­nif­i­cance and cul­ture as­so­ci­ated with the food savoured dur­ing the fes­ti­val

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More com­monly re­ferred as Bakri Eid, Eid-alAdha the tex­tual name of the fes­ti­val, hon­ours the will­ing­ness of Prophet Ibrahim to sac­ri­fice his son upon the com­mand of God. The celebratio­ns of the fes­ti­val will be­gin in the evening of Au­gust 11 and will con­tinue till Au­gust 12.

While Eid-ul-Fitr is cel­e­brated with much fer­vour and ex­cite­ment, af­ter re­li­giously fast­ing for 30 days dur­ing the holy month of Ramzan, the sig­nif­i­cance of this fes­ti­val lies in the sac­ri­fice of a male goat.

The meat of the goat is then feasted upon af­ter di­vid­ing it into three parts. The first part is gifted to the friends and rel­a­tives, the sec­ond is given to the poor and needy peo­ple, while the last part is de­voured by the fam­ily. “In a ma­jor­ity of Mus­lim house­holds, haleem or biryani is pre­pared from the goat that has been sac­ri­ficed. Mut­ton biryani is made and dis­trib­uted among all,” says Bhu­mit Gandhi, chef, The Craft Kitchen. “The essence is to teach the com­mu­nity the value of giv­ing and shar­ing with the com­mu­nity,” af­firms Shikha Nath, culi­nary di­rec­tor, Cop­per Chim­ney

In­dia.

SIG­NIF­I­CANCE OF LAMB

“Gosht is significan­t as the tra­di­tion started when God re­placed Abra­ham’s son with a goat dur­ing his test of sac­ri­fice,” ex­plains Ro­han D’Souza, chef of Bas­anti and Co, about the sig­nif­i­cance of lamb or goat meat.

Elab­o­rat­ing fur­ther on why cer­tain in­gre­di­ents and meats are used dur­ing food prepa­ra­tions, Chadi Bayram, chef at Rue Du Liban, says, “Since a lot of peo­ple fast dur­ing this time, the meals are tra­di­tion­ally pro­tein-rich pri­mar­ily made from goat or lamb meat. There are also spe­cial sweets made dur­ing this Eid to give the per­fect bal­ance of sweet and flavours.”

A wide va­ri­ety of del­i­ca­cies, from gosht ko­rma to an ar­ray of birya­nis, are whipped up on this day to ring in the fes­tiv­i­ties. “Bakri Eid is also known as Nam­keen Eid (savoury Eid), with sev­eral ki­los of meat to cook from. In this fes­ti­val, there are many va­ri­eties of food prepa­ra­tions made with the same meat, each hav­ing its own unique taste,” says Chef Ishi­jyot Surri, ex­ec­u­tive chef, Mulk, And­heri (W).

AR­RAY OF FLAVOURS

A coun­try like In­dia with its di­verse cul­tures, has food prepa­ra­tions that are in­flu­enced from dif­fer­ent re­gions. “The dishes that are prom­i­nent dur­ing Bakri Eid are about tra­di­tional cook­ing and re­gional flavours. For in­stance, the Ben­galis will savour biryani, keema and parathas, while down South, ko­rma and biryani are the show steal­ers,” adds Ishi­jyot.

Chef Ra­he­man of Biryani Hazir Ho lists other dishes that are com­monly pre­pared dur­ing fes­tiv­i­ties. “Apart from the meal pre­pared from lamb, goat or sheep, in In­dia, there are var­i­ous meals pre­pared on Eid. How­ever, Lamb Gosht and Mut­ton Biryani are the most com­mon. Some of the other fa­mous dishes in­clude biryani, pu­lao, ko­rma, bhuna gosht, roasted or tawa chop etc. ,” he says.

Here is a peek into some tra­di­tional dishes that al­ways make an ap­pear­ance at the lav­ish Eid spread.

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