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Ketupat, the most synonymous symbol with Hari Raya

By on June 6, 2012 — Updated on March 23, 2016

Ketupat or packed rice is a type of dumpling from Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, and the Philippines (where it is known by the name Patupat in Kapampangan, Bugnóy in Hiligaynon, Pusô in Cebuano, or Ta’mu in Tausug). Ketupat is made from rice that has been wrapped in a woven palm leaf pouch and boiled. [1]

In Indonesia, they have a ketupat ritual during the week after Idul Fitri. Just to recall, Idul Fitri or commonly known as Lebaran in Indonesia is a three-day Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. I have read from the article of The Jakarta Post that at the ritual, a jodhang (a two-square meter basket) is placed, holding hundreds of ketupat and lepet (snacks made of sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves) while people pray. It also mentioned that the overall meaning of the celebration is to confess wrong in order to quickly become empty so that people can welcome the coming of God’s lighis the most synonymous symbol with Hari Raya Festival other than lemang, rendang and pelita or panjut. It is commonly used as decorative object during the season and even seems to become its icon. Together with lemang, rice cooked in hallowed bamboo that is lined with young banana leaf, and  usually served with rendang to the special guests during this festive season. Rendang is made from beef (or sometimes made from other types of meat and vegetables) slowly cooked in coconut milk and spices for several hours until almost all the liquid is gone.

On the other hand, oil lamps known as pelita or panjut are lit during the days before Hari Raya to attract spirits and angels to descend and bring blessings to people’s home during the night of Lailatul Qadar as traditionally believed. Nowadays the oil lamps are lit only for decorative purpose; the same is true with ketupat.

Different Varieties of Ketupat

Generally , the  most common varieties of ketupat are the ketupat nasi (white rice) and ketupat pulut (glutinous rice). And the most common forms that are used as decorations during Hari Raya are the diamond-shaped and the garlic shape, but when it comes to bigger display during the festive season, the diamond-shaped one is usually seen because its simplicity and is easy-to-form.

There are many other varieties of ketupat that can be created for fun and decoration. It can be formed like bird, swan heart, flower, gift, ox or even dinosaur.


The Wrapping Materials

  • Coconut Leaves. This is the most well-known material used as ketupat wrapper especialyl for the real one, not for decorative purposes, and for Hari Raya Festival. Coconut leaves also serves as clue that the rice dumpling being served is ketupat nasi (white rice).
  • Fan Palm Leaves. Malay call this daun palas. The leaves of fan palm are mostly circular in outline, sometimes undivided but more usually divided into wedge-shaped segments. The latter is used in making a ketupat pulut or ketupat daun palas – glutinous rice is being used.
  • Pandan Leaves. “Pandan (screwpine pandanus) is a type of plant that grows in tropical areas of Asia. Pandan leaves have a sweet, unique flavor that is commmonly used in Southeast-Asian countries to enhance both desserts and savory dishes.” –
  • Artificial Wrappers. In cities particularly, there already ready-to-cook ketupats that wrap with artificial wrapper, the High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) plastic bag. Some people call it, “instant ketupat.”
  • Ribbons. These are mainly used for decorative purposes. The available wide range of colors and designs make the ribbons good alternative for palm leaves to make decorative ketupats.

 Free Ketupat Raya Pictures

Perhaps it is safe to say that you have come across this page or some of the images on this page because you are looking for some images of ketupat raya as the most synnonymous symbol with Hari Raya Festival in most countries of South-east Asia (most particularly in Brunei, Indonesia,Malaysia and Singapore) that you can use on your design for the coming Eason.


Yeah, you have landed to the right page because the images here are really intended for that purpose. You can use these images on making Hari Raya Cards (kad raya), wall papers and other designs for free. I know that these images are only few yet these are of high resolution which can be used for a larger printing. Some of these images riches up to 3876 x 2522 pixels in dimension.

Click the Image  to Download

The high resolution copy of these images are stored at Wikimedia Commons and are subject to the TOS (Terms of Use) of the site. You can click on the “Download Full Size” to save the tems.


Click the Image  to Download

This images are my own works so you have nothing to worry about the copyright because these ketupat photos are license-free and can be use whether for commercial or personal purposes as long as these images will not be use for illegal matters and obscene purposes.  Please read the Terms of Use of this blog or learn more about Creative Commons.


Click the Image  to Download


Click the Image  to Download

Before I forget to mention, these items are only artificial and are intended for graphic design and illustration purposes only. The strips, imitating the coconut leaves, are designed in Adobe Photoshop and printed in a large format printer. Each paper strips are about one meter long and only one side is colored that is why you can see some white portion on it. However, you can edit it as you wish. When clicking the Download Full Size, you may notice that some of these photos are rotated. It is intentionally done to save space on this post.


Click the Image  to Download


Click the Image  to Download

Since these images of ketupat raya were shot in white background, you can easily cut them to shape. Actually, I have tried to upload some of these images in transparent background but the file capacity is too big that is why only jpeg format is available here. As I always do, I look forward that these free ketupat raya images would be a help to every graphic designers, especially from countries South-east Asia, to lighten their tasks on creating creative Hari Raya design these ketupat raya picture have helped you in any way, my great pleasure if you leave a comment.

Here are 10 more photos that you could enjoy. Click the image to download.

 [1] Definition from Wikipedia

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  1. tatess

    June 14, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    I wonder it they have step by step procedure on how to make that palm leave cubes.
    I invite you to read: Makati Express Cargo at Reklamo ng mga OFWMy Profile

  2. metalpig design

    June 19, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    Great! I thought that the above Ketupat images are real photos, unlike the images of Ketupat raya below that so obvious because of the embedded designs. :)
    I invite you to read: Liquid Flowers High Speed Photography Series by Jack LongMy Profile

  3. RonLeyba

    June 20, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Design looks cool. Love them! great share. Ketupat!
    I invite you to read: Learning the 5 Types of College ProfessorsMy Profile

  4. Nicholas

    August 14, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Dear Sir,
    What a wonderful ketupat designs!

    I would like to do something on Newspaper publication by using some of ur ketupat photo, can i have the authority to do that?

  5. Farah

    August 15, 2012 at 8:38 am

    Thanks for sharing and allowing the free download!

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