Which sweets will you have this Eid?

Which sweets will you have this Eid?
Baklava is a local favourite during the festival

Desserts are a favourite part of the celebration. Let's indulge in an array of festive sweets - prepared from traditional recipes, with utmost love, and a lot of patience

By Deepa Narwani

Published: Fri 23 Jun 2017, 10:46 AM

Last updated: Sat 24 Jun 2017, 12:52 PM

It's time to celebrate Eid al-Fitr - whether you've been invited to a family gathering or for an outing with friends, you'll most likely be heading there with a box of confectionery, because what is Eid without sweets, right? At home too, everyone will get busy making an endless supply of pleasurable homemade, sweet things. So, what sweets are you looking forward to enjoying the most this Eid? Will it be the Emirati speciality Luqaimat (gooey dumplings), a tower of the crunchy Turkish Baklava or a big pot of the warm, milky Indian delicacy Seviyan?
UAE is home to a diverse population of more than 200 nationalities and there is an endless variety of treats to be devoured, as different communities come together to celebrate the festival and share recipes from their homeland. On Eid, everyone is encouraged to eat all things rich and creamy. Sweet shops across town offer special Eid packaging loaded with all types of colourful sweets. Especially in demand are stuffed dates, Arabic sweets, dry fruits, and a variety of chocolates. There is nothing that brings more happiness than unwrapping a box of sweets and sharing it around with your loved ones.
Festive sweets are a work of labour and patience. Think careful peeling and sifting of nuts, rolling out the dough, preparing a sweet syrup, etc. Ask anyone what their favourite part of the Eid meal is and most will certainly say it's the dessert. Everybody always saves a little space in anticipation of indulging in the sweet course. Here are a few of the popular treats.
Luqaimat: These dumplings drizzled with date molasses are widely regarded as the official sweet of the UAE and are a must-have for the occasion. Logma (80056462) in BOXPARK offers the traditional dish. Here, you can also sample different flavours such as salted caramel, Oreo, and berries.
Maa'moul: A popular sweet pastry in Lebanon, these buttery cookies are stuffed with date paste or chopped walnuts or pistachios, and dusted with powdered sugar. Sah El Nom (044231122) in Business Bay offers the decadent Maa'moul Bel Jeben that is sure to be a hit with the entire family.
Seviyan: Indians, Pakistanis, and Bangladeshis celebrate the occasion with sweet vermicelli noodles also known as Seviyan that are either served dry or in a milk pudding. Toasting the noodles in butter until they smell nutty is a fragrance that evokes nostalgia in most homes. The flavour comes from cooking them in scented milk, and the nuts and dried fruits provide the dish with a crunch. People from these communities also enjoy other authentic sweets like Barfi and Gulab Jamun. All of these treats are available at Puranmal (044489561) shops located at various spots around town.
Baklava: This Turkish import is another local favourite during the festival. The paper-thin layers of dough are filled with chopped nuts and is held together by honey. Also, it makes for an ideal gift. For the ultimate indulgence, opt for the luscious Pistachio Rosewater Baklava Cheesecake at SugarMoo (043997371) in Al Quoz.
Kunafa: A speciality of the Levant region, it is a vermicelli-based cheesy pastry that comes soaked in a sugar-based syrup and is an absolute treat for anyone with a sweet tooth. Firas Sweets (042638489) in Qusais is popular for serving a rich version of the dessert.
Umm Ali: At the gastronomic core of any authentic sweet table lies this dreamy treat, without which no celebratory meal is complete. A deliciously creamy, bread and butter pudding - it is a festive favourite. Reem Al Bawadi (043947444, across five locations in Dubai) serves this traditional sweet - here, it comes topped with coconut, almond, dried raisin, and pistachio.
Deepa is a proud geek and an unabashed Harry Potter fan

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