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Behind The Story of The Must-Have Eid Pastries

Behind The Story of The Must-Have Eid Pastries

Auli Cinantya
29 April 2022


Several famous and must-have pastries are usually available during the Eid celebration, such as Nastar, Kastangels, Putri Salju, and many more. But did you know how those pastries become the must-have pastries during Eid?


After a whole month of fasting, we have finally arrived on the most awaited day, Hari Raya. Family comes, and the table is full of delicacies, such as Ketupat, Opor, etc. Muslims worldwide celebrate this festivity to their heart’s content on this day. 

When Hari Raya arrives, pastries are usually one of the snacks that must be served on the table, whether for hosting your family or sending thoughtful hampers to your friends and loved ones. As one of the mandatory types of food during Eid, the appearance of pastries is undoubtedly quite striking compared to traditional cakes and other Eid dishes.

Several famous and must-have pastries are usually available during the Eid celebration, such as Nastar, Kastangels, Putri Salju, and many more. But did you know how those pastries become the must-have pastries during Eid? 

Pastries such as snow princess, Nastar, Kastengel, and so on have a nuanced European appearance compared to other traditional Indonesian cakes. When Dutch people resided in Indonesia, some of these pastries were the delicacies they presented during Christmas; that tradition was adopted by indigenous noble families (priyayi) to send out pastries during Eid. 


Pastries like nastar are cakes that are very popular with the public at the time of Lebaran. This cake is usually served to welcome guests and family who visit the house.

In Indonesia, In Indonesia, Nastar has been known since the Dutch colonial period. It is one of the famous pastries served during Eid in Indonesia. The name Nastar itself comes from the Dutch language “ananas,” which means pineapple, and “taart,” which implies pie or tart, so Nastar is a pineapple tart. The original recipe of this pastry uses blueberries or apples; however, since, at that time, finding blueberries was quite hard in Indonesia, they replaced the filling with Pineapple, thus becoming the Nastar we’ve known today.

In addition, nowadays, you can find Nastar, which is also made with other fruit jams, such as strawberries, chocolate, blueberries, and others. But not only for Eid, but Nastar is also served on holidays, from Christmas, Eid, to the Chinese New Year.

Putri Salju

Putri salju, is Indonesian for “snow princess”, the name refers to the powdered sugar coating that resembles snow. It is a typical delicacy for festive occasions and major holidays, such as Eid, Christmas, and Chinese New Year.

Putri Salju is usually a cake that attracts attention because of its different color from other cakes. This cake is not only famous in Indonesia but also in Germany and Austria.

In Austria, Putri Salju si called “Vanillekipferl.” The shape and taste of the pastry in Austria are similar to the Putri Salju we know. From the shape of a small crescent moon to the sprinkled powdered sugar. The only difference is Vanillekipferl – like its name, usually uses Vanilla on their recipe. 

When biting into this cake, you will feel a cold sensation in your mouth. In Germany and Austria, this cake is the hallmark of Christmas celebrations. The cookies’ dough is made from a fine mixture of flour, cornstarch, butter or margarine, and egg yolks baked in the oven. After the cookies are ready, they are left to cool slowly to room temperature. Once cool, powdered sugar is sprinkled upon the cookies or placed in a plastic bag and shaken to distribute the sugar evenly on the cookies’ surfaces. 

Today, while most are prepared in the typical fashion with sugar, several variants of Putri Salju are available, including cheese and chocolate. A version including pandan is also quite popular.

Lidah Kucing

Lidah Kucing is widely known and loved throughout the archipelago. These pastries are a special dish in the festive season, such as Eid, Christmas, and Chinese New Year.

Originating from the Netherlands, Lidah Kucing is a type of pastry that has a shape similar to a cat’s tongue; an oval shape with a thin crust. It has a delicious, savory, and crunchy taste. In Dutch, this pastry is called “Kattentongen”, which also means cat’s tongue.

Originally this cake had a golden color with a sweet-savory taste. It has a thin exterior with a crunchy texture. This savory and sweet cake is quite popular to serve during Eid and enjoy with a cup of tea.


Another Eid pastry that came from the colonial era is Kastangel. It is a type of pastry widely sold in bakeries, especially before special religious holidays during Eid and Christmas, Chinese New Year, etc. 

Original from the Netherlands. The name Kastangel comes from the words “Kaas” and “stengels” in the Dutch language, Kaas means cheese, and stengels means bars. Therefore, these snacks were called Kaasstengels or cheese sticks and are now known by the Indonesian tongue as kastengel.

It is not surprising that Indonesians have traditionally known it because, in the long history of Indonesian cuisine, it is possible that this Kastengel cake recipe was introduced by Dutch ladies in the colonial era of the Dutch East Indies.

The secret to the varied flavors of this kastengel recipe is the cheese used to make it. Depending on the taste and cheese variations, the recipe can use cheddar cheese, Edam cheese, or gouda cheese.

Cheese Sago Cookies (Kue Sagu)

Cheese Sago Cookies are one of the favorite traditional cookies on a special day of Indonesian religious festive. Cheese Sago Cake is a pastry made from sago flour with a soft texture. It tastes sweet and savory and is usually made with finely grated cheese.

This cheese sago cake is in great demand because of its very crunchy and ‘cheesy’ taste, which makes it not enough only to enjoy 1-2 pieces. This white cake with a beautiful shape is also soft and melts instantly when you put it in your mouth. You might find a few similarities with Kue Semprit, using a piping technique that uses Spritz as its nozzle, resulting in the shape of the swirl that we know today. 

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