A Tradition of Sudanese Hospitality
"Haboaba" is the term of endearment for grandmother in Sudan. The name Haboaba's Kitchen is a tribute to my maternal grandmother, the creator of our family recipe for traditional tea biscuits or "Baskaweet Al-Shai"
In Sudan, the tradition of Baskaweet Al-Shai is inextricably linked to our culture of hospitality. Guests to a Sudanese house are always first served a cold refreshing beverage, and this is usually closely followed by some tea and biscuits.
Because of this, Sudanese households are always well-stocked with Baskaweet Al-Shai, or Baskaweet al-Nashadir as they are sometimes called, referring to their key ingredient of nashadir or bicarbonate.
Traditionally, the womenfolk in a household would get together to make the tea biscuits, especially before big occasions like Eid al Fitr marking the end of Ramadan or celebrations like weddings when the family is expecting lots of guests to come and stay for a few days.
You could always tell when it was biscuit-making day at the family home in my mother’s town, because the kitchens of at least two of the adjoining houses of my aunts would be abuzz with activity and the distinctive smell of nashadir would fill the air.
To this day, if you ask any Sudanese about “Baskaweet al-Shai” or “Baskaweet al-Nashadir” his/her eyes will light up with recognition and with fond childhood memories of dipping the biscuits in milk or tea at breakfast time before going to school.
At Haboaba's Kitchen, we are excited to bring you a taste of our Sudanese culture and tradition in the form of these tea biscuits. We take pride in crafting our biscuits by hand in the same traditional manner followed by previous generations.
We hope you will try our tea biscuits - we promise you are in for a treat!