Monday, October 20, 2008

Ketupat Manggis

For this year Raya I ODed the house with ketupat manggis (mangosteen in english). I learned this from my grand aunt when I was in my teens and I have taught this to several people over the years but I don't know if they practiced making it. The only other person apart from me who makes this now is my cousin Wina whom I taught the ketupat manggis and several others. I am slowly adding on the many different shapes for her to learn. Do you know, ketupat making is a Malay heritage? According to what little information I can get on it. Apparently it's on wiki. It's a dying art and I'm trying to keep it alive in my own way. I have plans, but I need an illustrator!

Anyhoo, this is the traditional ketupat manggis, it's has the flower part at the bottom, the 'fruit' and the 'stalk'. I just curled the ends of the ribbons to make it look 'prettier'.

Then, people would comment on how pretty the bottom is, I turned it around, removing the stalk to give a flat bottom and I added the pointy bits around the flowers (inspired from one of my many origami books) and ta-da!

So I got these spread all over the house, on table tops and hanging from the chandeliers. Got big ones and mini ones. When my brother was having his Raya open house, I packed a boxful of them and passed them over to him and he had them spread around his house too.

Traditionally, the ketupat manggis according to my grand aunt, were used for 'barang hantaran' (dowry?) it sits alongside with ketupat payau, panyu and ayam (uuhhh... deer, sea turtle and hen). I labelled them under decorative ketupats. I'm trying to remember how to make the payau, I managed to make the panyu and I can only make ayam biasa, I never mastered the ayam mengaram (brooding hen... I think...) so I'm in trouble and my grand aunt isn't exactly getting any younger.


  1. Rozi..I want to learn all the ketupat making especially the traditional one..It will be too bad, when the art of making ketupat just left it's name. I think we need some kind of sharing sessions in the future you know? :) Glad to know someone want to preserve our heritage :)

  2. Rozi... do u do any workshop on doing all these decoration? mcm...interesting. I've never seen ketupat manggis. Mau belajar jua. Let me know kalau u ada buat workshop, ok?

  3. Maya: It's one of my major projects. I'm thinking of doing a full blown paper on it. It's in the works, dedicated to my grand aunt, I owe her that much.

    Maya & Syazlie: I sorta do a workshop every time puasa happens. I'll advertise next time round. I believe every orang melayu or calls themselves malay should know how to make at least the basic ketupats, and that's five different shapes already. It's the one thing we can call our own and it must live on for the generations to come.

  4. Aww..shame on me. i shouldn't be calling myself 'melayu'... i'll start calling myself 'pakistan' je lah...
    yeah i've learn how to make the normal ketupat... yg biasa tu lah..and also ketupat..err..ketupat palas kah... the one yg looks like "Rocket". But.. memory no seems to forget how to do it.. and also..i'm slow too.

    Bah.. guess have to wait until Next puasa.

    Btw... how about others? Mcm those hand books, cards.. do u do workshop for that too?

  5. Very nice indeed. I wish you could teach me how to make one. Thank you.


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