Festival of Ridvan

  • Ridvan celebrates Baha’u’llah’s time in 1863 in the garden of Ridvan in Baghdad when He publicly declared His station as a Manifestation of God. The Ridvan Festival is 12 days long and is also the time of year when Baha’is elect their governing bodies.
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Featured in: Ayyam-i-Ha


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Ayyam-i-Ha is a Baha’i festival that is joyously celebrated in countries and territories all over the world. It is a time of hospitality, generosity, and caring for the needy. It typically falls around the end of February and beginning of March and it is either four or five days long.

Yummy Treats for Ayyam-i-Ha!

February 26, 2024, in Images > Community, by

After seeing so many delicious treats that were made for friends, family, neighbours (and their dogs too!), we just had to bring back the Great Big Ayyam-i-Ha Bake Off for a second year! What’s the Bake Off? We asked Baha’is and their friends in Australia and around the world to send in photos, videos and recipes of their favourite Ayyam-i-Ha treats or the new recipes they were trying out to celebrate these special days. As with last year, we were delighted to see your submissions roll in and we’re giddy with excitement to share them all with you!

Sunshine Coast Youth and JY’s Super Cookie

A group of youth and junior youth from the Sunshine Coast got together and baked a large cookie to share with one another, as well as a batch of regular sized chocolate chip cookies. They called this experience ‘never back down, never give up’. This bake off was not only fun and exciting but also a learning experience, because they were able to adapt the process in which the cookies were made and ultimately strengthen their teamwork skills while enjoying the delicious outcome together.

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Niv’s Lotus Temple Cookie

Last year Niv sent us an incredibly iced cookie with a depiction of the Shrine of the Bab and this year she’s sent us another spectacular cookie!

It’s been a joy to get to know Niv better since she sent us that first cookie and it was wonderful to chat with her and learn what spiritual lessons baking teaches her.

Talented baker that she is (you can find all her bakes on Instagram under the handle @niv.witherwhisk), Niv said there’s no specific recipe for this cookie because it was made with ingredients and scraps she has on hand for making edible art — and art this cookie truly is!

Tahirih’s Star Sugar Cookies

Tahirih and her daughter from Uganda were excited to make star sugar cookies for their friends!

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Tammy’s Orange Sugar & Spice Cookies

Tammy and her brother baked these scrumptious nine-pointed orange sugar and spice cookies. With this ingredient list, I bet they smelled heavenly. Tammy said that they omitted the food colouring but that the cookies are delicious regardless — as evidenced by the big bite that’s been taken!


1 cup room temp shortening

1 1/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon orange extract

3 1/2 cups flour

Approximately 3/4tsp ground cardamom (minimum)

Approximately 1/2tsp clove (minimum)

Red and yellow food colouring to preference


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the shortening and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, vanilla, and orange extract and spices and beat until combined.

Slowly add the flour, stirring just until combined. Mix in your optional food coloring at this point.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and use your hands to form into a disk. Roll the dough to 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick and cut with lightly floured cookie cutters. Place cookies on the prepared baking sheets.

Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, or just until the edges barely start to turn golden. Nibble on any leftover dough. Remove from the baking sheets to a rack to cool before icing.

Enjoy sharing your cookies with your friends and family!

Negar’s Fundraising Cookies, Jam, Jelly and Torshi Litteh

Negar from the United States has made not one, not two, not three, but four items — all as contributions for a fundraiser in her community! She made nine-pointed star sugar cookies, guava jam and hot guava jelly, and torshi litteh (which are Persian pickled vegetables). Yum!

Aaliyah’s Ayyam-i-Ha Fruit Lavashak

Aaliyah and her mum Catherine cooked and baked up this scrumptious fruit based treat and packaged them up so beautifully!

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 ▪ 5 medium plums or other fruit like apricots and peaches
 ▪ ½ cup water 
 ▪ Dash of salt 


 1 Roughly chop the plums. Take out the seeds. 
 2 Place the plums, water and salt into a sauce pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. 
 3 Let simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the fruit is mushy to the point of falling apart. 
 4 Put everything into a blender and blend well. 
 5 Preheat your oven to 90’C 
 6 Line a tray with baking paper. 
 7 Spread the fruit mixture on the baking paper about 3-5 mm thin 
 8 Bake in the oven for about 4-5 hours, checking every hour. 
 9 The lavashak is done when there is no visible wetness and the fruit leather separates easily from the paper. 
10 Cut into strips and package for Ayyam-i-Ha gifts

They also kindly sent us a video showing us how the lavashak is made!

Sathanah’s Ayyam-i-Ha Cheese Tarts

Sathanah from Malaysia sent us a picture of these mouth-watering cream-cheese Ayyam-i-Ha tarts!

Pastry shell recipe (bake at 170 Celsius for 10 -15 minutes)

125 grams of butter

250 grams of flour

50 grams of icing sugar

an egg yolk

Cheese filling (bake at 150 Celsius, 5-7 minutes) 

250 grams of cream cheese

70 grams of castor sugar


Add butter, icing sugar, vanilla essence, and egg yolk into a bowl and mix well.

Add flour and mix well. Rest the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Then, press the dough into a tart mould and bake in a preheated oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

While the pastry shells are baking, prepare the cheese filling.

Add cream cheese and castor sugar into a bowl and beat until fluffy. 

Fill the tart with blueberry jam or any desired filling and pipe in the cheese cream.

After 5 to 7 minutes, discard the tarts from the oven and set aside to cool for some time.

And voila, the yummy cheese tarts are ready to be served! 

Aleisha’s Jam Drop Cookies

Aleisha is an artist in Canada. She and her son made jam drop cookies. These are their absolute favourite cookies to make for family and friends, and every year they make little packages to give to first responders, neighbours and teachers in the community. What a sweet (pun intended!) idea!

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Ayda & Ayleen’s Cute-as-a-Button Cookies

All baking is an act of love! Sisters Ayda and Ayleen we very excited to use a cookie mix and lovingly decorate its dough with mini chocolates. Don’t they look delicious?

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Diana’s Fruit & Nut Chews

Diana from the United States shared one of her favourite treats with us: fruit and nut chews!

2 eggs beaten
½ c brown sugar 
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup chopped pecans (or other nuts)
¼ cup flaxseed (opt.)
1 cup flour (whole wheat or other flour*)
1 cup pitted dates, chopped
1 cup dried cranberries and/or raisins 
1 tablespoon vanilla or almond extract

Pour flour over dates, nuts & raisins. Then cream brown sugar, vanilla, & eggs in separate bowl. Toss flour & nut mixture until well coated. Then mix into egg mixture a little at time.  Drop onto greased cookie sheet and bake 10-12 minutes in 350 degree pre-heated oven until light brown. 

(*may substitute regular flour, gluten-free or rice flour - very flexible recipe)

Makes approx. 4 dozen

Rohan & Bahiyyih’s Special Ayyam-i-Ha Stollen Tray Bake

Rohan and Bahiyyih, with the help of their parents, made a very special stollen tray bake! As you’ll see at the bottom of the recipe, they advise that it tastes better after a day or two–but that waiting is impossible! I can definitely see why!

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1000g wheat or spelt flower
2 tbsp baking powder
250g sugar (we used 125g as we prefer our stollen less sweet)
360g butter (soft) for the cake and another 100g to brush the cake after it's finished baking
500g of quark or strained Greek yogurt
4 eggs
400g dried fruit of your choice (we used apples, mangoes, pineapples, strawberries and coconut)
200g chopped brazil nuts
200g chopped blanched almonds
800ml apple juice (for soaking dried fruit)
pinch of salt
ground cloves 1/2 tsp
ground cardamon 1/2 tsp
ground nutmeg 1/2 tsp
ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp
zest of 1 lemon
100g powder sugar for dusting the cool baked cake


1. Soak the dried fruit in the apple juice for a couple of hours

2. Using a hand-held electric mixer cream butter and sugar until light in colour and fluffy

3. Add eggs and quark/yogurt and keep mixing for a couple of minutes

4. Mix dry ingredients together

5. Sift dry ingredients into the wet mixture and carry on mixing using a wooden spoon until a wet dough forms

6. Transfer the dough to a flat surface and knead with hands for 5 mins

7. Using your hands, flatten the dough and add the soaked dried fruit and chopped nuts in the middle of the dough (the fruit needs to be drained properly and pat-dried with paper towel before mixing into the dough)

8. Bring the ends of the dough together to form a parcel and knead for another couple of minutes till the fruit and nuts are mixed well into the dough

9. Transfer the dough to a baking tray (28cm x 39cm) and spread to fill in the form

10. Bake for 40-50 mins at 180C/160 fan till golden brown on top and a skewer inserted comes out clean

11. Once out of the oven, brush with melted butter

12. Dust with icing sugar and leave to cool completely before eating

This cake tastes better after a few days, if you can wait!

Lynn’s Cupcakes

Lynn from Canada was quick to whip up a batch of colourful cupcakes using a cake mix as well as chocolate chips, sprinkles and cookies!

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Sugar Cookies from Youth and Junior Youth in Georgia

Junior youths and youths in Georgia (the country!) baked cookies, packaged them with quotes, organized a festival for their two neighbourhoods and distributed cookies to those who came. They also went door-to-door to neighbours and shared cookies with them. What a wonderful service project!

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Three Generation Sugar Cookies

Three generations of @Az Dooki‘s family came together to make sugar cookies for her kid’s classmates. What a lovely gesture!

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Aiden’s Coconut & Oat Cookies

Five year old Aiden baked cookies and wrapped them up in gift wrap with a little “Happy Ayyam-i-Ha” card. He gave them out to his friends at school and they were most warmly received, not just by his friends but their parents too. A number of the parents took the time to explain to their kids how special it was that Aiden was celebrating his faith with them. Isn’t that lovely?

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The Zagreb Community’s Annual Baking Tradition

The Baha’i community of Zagreb, Croatia, has a long standing tradition of coming together with friends around the first day of Ayyam-i-Ha. Together they bake several batches of cookies and cakes in big quantities all at once. At the same time, they prepare beautiful greeting cards with a quote which are mailed to friends and attached to the cookie gift bags which are then given to neighbours, school teachers, classmates and friends. These few hours together are really fun and joyful for young and old. Stories and songs are shared so everyone is involved and contributes to bringing good cheer. What a lovely way to begin Ayyam-i-Ha!

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Nine-Pointed Star Surprise Cake & Frozen Stars by Silas & Nuria

Silas and Nuria from Lund, Sweden joyfully prepared a surprise cake and frozen fruit and chocolate stars — both creations look equality mouth-watering but I bet that cake was a lot of fun to cut into!

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Frozen 9 pointed star with fruits and chocolate

Add little pieces of fruits to Greek yogurt
Mix it up and place on a tray – in a 9 pointed star shape
Put in the freezer for at least 2 hours
Melt chocolate 
Take the stars out of the freezer and cover them with the melted chocolate
Let them freeze again for a while and serve! 

9 pointed star surprise Cake 
Bake 2 sponge cake (ours were gluten free )

5 eggs
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 1/4 cups gluten-free maize cornflour
1/2 tsp gluten-free baking powder
2 tbsp gluten-free raspberry jam
300ml thickened cream, whipped
2 tsp pure icing sugar

Step 1
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Grease two 20cm (base) round cake pans. Line bases with baking paper.
Step 2
Using an electric mixer, beat eggs for 8 to 10 minutes or until thick and creamy. Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until sugar dissolves.
Step 3
Sift cornflour and baking powder together (see tip). Add to egg mixture. Gently fold to combine. Divide mixture between prepared pans. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes or until sponges’ spring back when touched. Line a wire rack with baking paper. Turn sponge out onto wire racks to cool.
Step 4
With the 1st cake, cut a circle in the center and place on a plate. 
With the second cake, cut in half horizontally. With one of the half, cut a circle in the center too. You have now three pieces of cake, both of them have their center empty, and the last one is “full”. 
Add butter cream (see recipe bellow) on your first piece of cake, pile the second piece on top of the first one and fill up the center of the cake with surprise candies. 
Once this is done, add again butter cream on the circumference of the cake and add the final piece of sponge cake. 
The last step: cover with icing or butter cream and decorate as you wish.

Butter Cream : 

600g icing sugar, sifted
300g unsalted or salted butter, softened
Optional extras
finely grated lemon zest
finely grated orange zest
a dash of vanilla extract
few drops food colouring
cocoa powder, to taste
Beat 600g sifted icing sugar and 300g butter together with your chosen flavouring and colouring if using, add 2-3 tbsp of boiling water to loosen and beat until smooth.
Fill a piping bag with a star nozzle and pipe onto cupcakes or smear in the middle and over the top of a 20cm cake using a palette knife.

Raj’s Ayyam-i-Ha Muffins

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Raj on Baha’i Blog–you may recognize him from our “What’s That Word” series or our holy day explainer videos. Wouldn’t you know it, Raj is back! With a cup of mischief, a heaping tablespoon of silliness, and a whole lot of love, Raj shares with us his Ayyam-i-Ha muffins he’s “baked” for his cousin Jordan!

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Thank you, friends, for participating in our Great Big Ayyam-i-Ha Bake Off! Wishing you a very joyous Ayyam-i-Ha!

Posted by

Sonjel Vreeland

In her innermost heart, Sonjel is a stay-at-home parent and a bookworm with a maxed out library card but professionally she is a museologist with a background in English Literature. She currently lives on Prince Edward Island, an isle in the shape of a smile on the eastern Canadian coast. Sonjel is a writer who loves to listen to jazz when she's driving at night.
Sonjel Vreeland

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