10 Hari Raya snacks that you'll usually find in Tawau

Day 4 of the Syawal month and I finally got an idea for my annual Hari Raya entry. Since there aren’t anything interesting to write about throughout the Ramadan month (because I’ve probably covered everything there is to it about that particular subject in my previous posts) so I focus my attention to the Syawal month. And while visiting a few open houses (and getting diarrhoea from them – lucky me!) I suddenly had an epiphany. So here I present to you guys (in no particular order) the… well, you can just reread the mouthful title above.

This Buginese staple biscuit is just delicious when it’s really thin in texture (well, that’s my preferences of course). Also called ‘Bangkek” by the locals, the relatively simple biscuit has now spawned several flavourings such as the coconut and cheese variety (yup, everything needs to have cheese nowadays huh?).

(Picture credit goes to Nur Zahara Rin)

Man… I used to ‘hate’ this cookie growing up, probably because it was the most manufactured kuih raya out there (meaning = my mom loves to buy the pre-packed ones from the nearest supermarkets that had less than stellar tastes). But then again, this is also arguably the most legendary cookie during Hari Raya so it will be a sin for me not to mention them at all. Plus I did eat some homemade semperit recently and they were pretty good; successfully restoring my faith in the latter.

I remember being introduced to this kuih/keropok hybrid when I was visiting one of my best friend’s home at 15 and got instantly hooked. It might be a bit ‘dusty’ to the hands but it is still something sweet and yummy to be had after a full on meal and are available in different flavourings.

This snack is probably the most synonymous to Tawau and not just during the festive season. And I remembered it being the most requested snack to bring back to the Peninsular Malaysia during my college years so it’s no doubt that it was very popular even outside of Tawau.  

(Pictures credit goes to C Maiy Bone and

I know that peanuts are nothing new when it comes to Hari Raya but the majority of said snack that I’ve encountered in Tawau often looked like the ones in the pictures. Probably due to the (again) Buginese influence, you would most likely see these flour coated peanuts more frequently than others.

I have to admit that the emergence of these types of snacks has grown quite a bit in the last few years. With various new flavourings being offered each year, the generally curry tasting snack has successfully integrated itself as one of the most popular Malaysian snack there is, even in Tawau.

(Pictures credit goes to Orang Sabahan blog and Suemamamas blog)

As I was ‘Google-ing’ the former, I’d noticed that there seemed to be a difference between Sabahan’s kuih makmur and its counterpart from other states. But then again I’m no expert when it comes to actually differentiating them so I can’t comment much on that. What I can comment on however is that both cookies were (very) powdery , sweet, has a crumbly texture and is much loved by my dad.

(Picture credit goes to Opah Ju blog)

Another popular Buginese light munchies that is a favourite of mine, this snack might looked similar to that of the muruku outwardly but taste wise is pretty different. More ‘oniony’ and non spicy, this crunchy goodness is just hard to put down once you started having them.

Moving on to my mom’s all time favourite; the popular Malaysian mini tarts has since ‘evolved’ into different shapes, sizes and even some whacky colourings. But the pineapple flavour is still very much the core of all that as it wouldn’t be a ‘tart nenas’ without the ‘nenas’ part right?

It would be unwise for me not to mention the modern Hari Raya cookies that seemed to be growing in terms of variety even more rapidly in these few years. There are just too many to mentioned here but the ones that stood out most probably be the Almond London, Red Velvet, Mini Popiah, Chocolate Chip and Cornflakes, just to name a few. Heck, there’s even this Onde Onde flavour cookies that has been making its rounds here in Tawau lately so anything’s possible right?

(Picture credit goes to Usahawan Hasil Laut blog)

As much as this crackers might looked very enticing, do be warn though that it is not in any way sweet or savoury. It is in fact quite bitter and is usually beloved by the older generations (although there are a few young people that I know who’d also loved them). The reason why this cracker did not made the cut is because that I'd actually seen less of them being served during the Hari Raya these recent years, quite possibly because of their pretty hefty pricing (due to them being imported from Indonesia and all). But I do miss seeing them around since this used to be a main stay during my childhood years (and the thing that my parents used to ‘prank’ me when I was little – like seriously!).

And last but not least, have a HAPPY EID AL-FITR everyone!
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