Terms

Katupek

Katupek
 
The motif called katupek refers to a fist-sized rice container made of interwoven strips of coconut-palm fronds. Uncooked rice is packed into the container, which is then boiled until the individual grains blend into a soft, homogeneous mass. The frond container is peeled away as the cooked rice is eaten. Katupek is used especially as a ceremonial food during the lebaran festival ('Id al-Fitr) that marks the end of the Muslim fasting month, bulan puaso (Ramadan).

According to Indonesian lore, however, each constituent of katupek also has symbolic significance. The rice stands for material goods, the container stands for the light of faith. In Indonesia the coconut frond from which the container is made is called janur. Nur, a word of Arabic origin, means light. The katupek, then, is considered to be a symbol for one whose faith is strong enough to provide for all material needs. As a katupek is boiled, the frond container becomes stronger, just as a person's faith becomes stronger and more durable as it faces and overcomes obstacles.

http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/199104/on.culture.s.loom.htm

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