Tabaski, also known as, “Eid al-Adha is an Islamic festival to commemorate the willingness of Ibrahim to follow Allah’s command to sacrifice his son Ishmael.” I pulled that from Wikipedia haha. It’s the most concise way to describe what Tabaski is. In Senegal, families save money all year in order to purchase a ram (like Ibrahim) to celebrate the holiday. The morning of, the men go to the mosquee, and when they return they slaughter a sheep (if they can afford one). If they can’t afford one, they will slaughter a goat if possible. Typically each married man will purchase and slaughter a sheep, so in my family, we had 2 sheep. My uncle and my host dad both bought one.
As you can imagine, we ate SO MUCH MEAT. For both lunch and dinner we ate grilled ribs, fries, onion sauce, and bread. It was super delicious, but I felt like I was on the verge of a heart attack for the next week…
My family had different stations for cooking, and as you can imagine all the grilling made it really smoky in the house, though we were actually in the outdoor portion of the house. This holiday required all hands on deck. Regardless of age, everyone participated in slaughtering, cooking, and cleaning. I would say Tabaski is like the “Christmas” of Senegal. It’s by far the biggest holiday. New clothes are a must, and in expensive fabric only!
Just like with Korite, we celebrated with our new years greetings, drinks, and visiting my family all over Saint-Louis.
Until next time,