*I’m counting this as a July post. I’d drafted a few posts, but the bloody computer crashed. So I’m obviously over the moon about that. Luckily a very clever friend of mine managed to salvage that harddisk thingy, and some pics I’d taken for some posts I’d been writing in my head. So here goes.
First of all though, Selamat menyambut Bulan Ramadan 1432 dan selamat menunaikan ibadah puasa to Muslim friends and readers. I started this blog exactly 3 years ago (Hijrah calendar) on one fine morning 1 Ramadan as well. So this is like an anniversary post really. Only a right-minded fasting person would blog during the first day of puasa, kan?
I have been very busy, so I’ve been slacking a bit on the cyber-authoring side. But I just checked the traffic, and I’m happy to say there’s been a steady flow of readers despite the lack of updates.
In the past few weeks, as is customary in the days before Puasa in Brunei, there have been a lot of makan-makan invitations in the form of “tahlil” ceremonies, prayers for our beloved deceased, a rememberance. But rather than being grim and sad, these tahlils are usually “happy” family events, celebratory almost – but not exactly an event you’d order a cake for with “Takziah” on it (though the thought did cross my mind once or twice) – it’s like we’re at peace with our loved ones not being with us anymore, and that they are now in God’s grace. For more recent bereavements, obviously there’s still some raw emotions, but when the whole kampung comes to pray for your family it has the psychological effect of calming you down, providing a sense of community and support over your sad loss. It’s therapeutic almost.
Then, there’s the food. A whole buffet of rich, greasy and calorie-pumped savoury foods and teeth-rotting sweets to follow.
At a recent event this thing caught my attention, the Sapit. This is a traditonal Bruneian sweet that is sugary and crispy, and is excellent for dunking into your equally saccharine coffee or tea.
The Sapit is actually a sweet crepe that’s either rolled up into cigar-shapes (Love letters), or folded twice into triangles like you see below.
But the peculiar thing about this otherwise simple snack is the bright colours and the flavours. The original Sapit I grew up with were plain batter colour, with some blackened ones probably made by a Bu’ajah with a short attention span so jadi angus. And the ones I love are those with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
So I consider these ones ‘modern’ because I’d never seen or tasted Green Pandan-, or Pink Strawberry-, or even Yellow Durian-flavoured Sapit until now. (You don’t see the Durian one in the pic except some labih-labihan).
I’m not a purist who’d say “this is an abomination of pure Bruneian sapit tradition, and it’s against my human right to be served these artificial concoctions!”.
I just think they’re… interesting.
*The Cacap deserves its own post. I simply do not know enough to write about it, although I’ve seen a contraption in our kitchen I was told was for making Cacap, but I’m convinced had been used for hot-branding animals, and possibly children.