And that folks is what a tray of happy looks like when you’re four years old 🙂
When Salma over at The Write Balance posted her perfect stovetop popcorn recipe I realized how long it had been since I had made any myself. Kettle corn with it’s sweet salty twist is my personal favorite so that was a no-brainer. The Oreos and sprinkles I had on hand and mixed them in. Mix in whatever you have handy or nothing at all. Because there is such little ‘cooking’ required, once the popcorn has popped this is such a fun thing to do with kids. They love to suggest mix ins, help you take pictures (lol), and of course – taste test.
Have a bright, happy, colorful weekend. This also brings to an end my ten posts over two weeks challenge courtesy the South Asian Bloggers Network. Thank you for coming back every day. If I could figure out how I would insert a bunch of heart emoticons here 😉
For my firstborn we did a very girly nursery, a soft purple and off white room with panel moldings and chair rails, plus a chandelier (of course lol). Girl 2 is going to get her own room this summer and this time I have something very different in mind and I am really excited about it! Think a bright white room with pops of color and some Pakistani kitsch thrown in. So this…
Beautiful Image Credit: Maria Aeliya Jafri
Whaddya think? Yes, no, maybe?
You can find my Pinterest board for the room here.
Thing Two: Qwirkle
I’ve been seeing this game around for a long time and got the travel version recently and it is so much fun! I love the strategy element of it and that my 4 year old gets it. She still needs a little help, but it is a game that we can enjoy now and play for many years to come.
Between Hello Kitty cookies, Frozen cookies, and these just for fun cookies, I have really started to love decorating cookies with royal icing. Would any of you know where I can take classes to get better at it or is YouTube my best bet?
Have a great day and come by tomorrow for my last post of the South Asian Blogger Networks 2-week challenge!
Decorated sugar cookies are so pretty aren’t they? I frequently see them in bakeries and cafes. The pretty colors and designs always make my older girl ooh and aah then beg and plead and most of the time she winds up not liking them. I can’t blame her because neither do I. Then a few years ago I discovered this cookie. This cookie has real bona fide flavor. People like it even without the icing and that says a lot.
There are two things that make this cookie a little extra special – one the inclusion of cream cheese and the second the few drops of almond extract which give it a fresh undertone without it tasting overtly like almonds. Mind you, I don’t always use the extract especially if I am taking them somewhere that is nut free and they are delicious without.
My favorite part about making these cookies was decorating them. My royal icing skills were pretty pathetic, but then youtube came to the rescue and now I love it and can’t wait to try different designs and techniques!
For those of you keeping track this is now my 8th out of 10 (hopefully) posts as part of the South Asian Blogger Networks two week blogging challenge! I see more and more of you are coming back here and I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU!
That first tear of chapati (flatbread), that first swoop through the curry, that first morsel of glistening fish with a scatter of cilantro as it gets scooped up into your mouth, that is a moment I look forward to every time I make this fish salan. I love the subtle notes of the golden onion, the lone tomato, and the moderate amount of fenugreek. The whole spices are there, but less aggressively so resulting in a curry that seems so perfect for this time of the year.
I didn’t grow up eating a lot of fish, not unless you count fish fingers as fish. It is only in recent years that I have started to cook it for a household that can’t live on chicken breasts alone and discovered how much I truly enjoy it’s delicacy. It is also an added bonus that once you’ve developed the curry part, the actual fish takes only minutes to cook meaning you could make the masala, set it aside and when you’re ready to eat it add the fish and finish the cooking.
My sister in law suggested adding fenugreek earlier in the cooking process and I find it works well, the flavor of the fenugreek seems to permeate the curry and the fish in a way my usual ‘last five minutes’ addition doesn’t. If you really enjoy the flavor of fenugreek you could easily double it here. If you are not a fan then leave it out and this will still be yummy.
So much of Pakistani food is hot and spicy and as discussed before we are not big on salads per se, so what do we use then for a fresh counterpunch to our food? Raita. Raita is essentially plain yogurt whipped smoothed and seasoned a myriad of ways with varying veggies or none at all.
This version of raita which is dip like in it’s consistency is new to me. A few years ago, we were visiting friends in London and our friend, who was almost 9 months pregnant then, had a biryani dinner ready for us when we got in. The biryani was very good, but this raita, now this raita blew my mind. Spinach, yogurt, garlic? sold, sold, sold.
So here I present to you a simple, humble side dish, that you can put together in minutes for a lovely side to a desi meal or dunk some crispy pita chips into for a little snack. My girls had it over rice for dinner, I would say the same for me, but an Aunt of mine once pointed out that I have rice with my raita not raita with my rice 😉
I am from a family of 7 – that’s 7 distinct personalities, 7 distinct opinions. Add to the mix that the ‘baby’ of the family is now 23 and well there isn’t a whole lot we all agree on. We do share two things in common – emotions that run high and deep and an unwavering love for ice cream. There is no time place or season that it is not appropriate to stuff your face with ice cream. Because I don’t want my readers to worry about my mental health I tend to avoid posting ice cream recipes in the middle of Canadian winters, but now it is spring it is time to share with you the wonders churned out by my cuisinart.
This ice cream recipe is a popular one I have made over and over again and here is what I have learnt – the quality of the chocolate and the flavour of the cocoa make all the difference. Yes, yes, I am Captain Obvious. But really, this isn’t the time to use your store brand chocolate chips, this is the time to bring out bars of darker chocolate you would actually like to eat. I had a 70% cacao bar handy instead of the recommended semisweet and I was reaching for my cocoa powder (grocery store stuff, nothing fancy) when I remembered something, a slightly acrid after taste I didn’t care for and I put down the cocoa powder and reached for some good ol’ Ovaltine.
The dark chocolate gives the ice cream depth and body while the Ovaltine with its malt-y smoothness gently rounds it out for an overall experience that is rich luscious perfection. You are welcome to make this with cocoa powder instead and know that it will still be lovely, but if you have some Ovaltine like I did then why not. Oh and if you do have Ovaltine throw away your previous chocolate frosting recipe and make this one.
Hello and welcome to this weeks collection of random three things that I have been up to or thinking about, but wouldn’t write an entire post about. That’s in large part because I have a food blog and don’t really know how I would tie some of this stuff in 😉
Thing One: Pretty Perfumes
At one point I had a modest collection of perfumes, at this point I am down to one that I love (Miss Dior), but I can see that it’s coming to an end. Since I no longer casually saunter through department stores smelling hundreds of bottles of perfume for fun (jk, I never did that) I didn’t know what I wanted next. As it turns out those perfume adverts in magazines that I usually just ignore have little strips you can open up and smell and these ones are just so pretty.
One day Kate, one day.
Thing Two: Her turn
Perhaps it’s just me, but with my first I was so excited to do things with her, share things with her, come up with new experiences, but with my second it is not even close to the same. Most of the time I plan around my older ones schedule and interests and my second is the lucky beneficiary of her sisters choices.
Well a visiting friend provided the perfect excuse for me to change that and this week I took Mishaal to a nearby farm. She loved it. All of it. From just being outdoors to running among haystacks to the mega bumpy slides and her favorite part – the sand pit where she would pick sand up in her little fists and squeal excitedly as she threw it. I cannot wait to take her back. Just her even.
When my brother graduated from college in upstate New York my husband and I drove down to help him pack up and move out. My brother – a fellow foodie – took me to one of his favorite cafes and there I got a cornbread muffin unlike any I had before. Now I went to school in the South (y’know if you y’all consider Virginia to be the South) and I have had many a cornbread, the tender lightly sweetened kind that you would have with something savory like a pot of chilli. But this sweet little thing, now this was a revelation.
I have made many many many cornmeal based baked goods since, one in particular, i.e Dorie Greenspan’s corniest corn muffins were my personal favorite until a fellow blogger pointed me towards this Serious Eats recipe. I made it once and then I knew, this, this was it.
So without further ado, here you go, a sweet moist skillet cornbread that is made even more delicious with a slathering of honey butter with a small dash of sea salt. Bliss.
My name is Sarah and I am a carbaholic. There, I said it, it’s done. Judge me all you skinny people with your zoodles and quinoa. By the way I like both things just fine, but put a steaming bowl of tehri in front of me and well…. I think you know how this plays out.
I have always loved Tehri unlike the rest of my siblings which meant I didn’t get to eat it as often as I liked, but when I did it always felt special. It was a dish that I had only ever seen made in my house and it didn’t even occur to me that there was another way to make it. When I got married my mil told me about her way – a way that involves tomatoes, curry leaves, and onion seeds and creates a flavor explosion which makes this a fun change from my usual. It is also different from my usual curry that I do not pre fry the potatoes for it. In this one you slice them nice and thin and cook it with the rest of the dish making this a one pot meal. Who doesn’t like a one pot meal?
Hello friends – how goes the long weekend? Good you say? Let’s make it great by rustling up a pan of these brownies. All it takes is some undecidedly fancy ingredients to get some pretty darn delicious results. Now I have had a go-to brownie recipe for a long time now, it is quick and delicious. With a few notable exceptions other brownie recipes have left me feeling a little ‘meh’ especially the ones that have involved elaborate procedures and recommended that I wait 24 hours before trying a piece – laughable really.
When I came across this one from Cookie + Kate I had a feeling. For one she takes crackly tops seriously, as do I. For another she seems to really get that a brownie, a perfect brownie, should be mostly fudgy but with a little bit of heft. A rich caramelly back note, a touch of coffee and a little extra cocoa powder doesn’t hurt. Also I think the stirring is kinda magical – the last 50 strokes at the end – don’t skip it.
Speaking of skipping things, I think I may have failed to mention something – the South Asian Bloggers Network. A duo of wonderful women came up with the idea of bringing South Asian bloggers under one banner to help foster the advantages of a community both in terms of blogging support and sponsorship. You can read more about it here.
Well the same duo also came up with a challenge a few weeks ago – a two week blogging challenge, a post on each weekday for two weeks straight making for a total of 10 posts over 14 days. Bring it on I say! Actually moment of truth: I totally panicked and am now faking a cool bring-it-on-its-no-bigs attitude. What I am genuinely excited about is bringing you a slew of yummies over the next two weeks – as my insta followers now I have been cooking and baking away and now it’s time to get blogging!
Hope you enjoy this sweet start to the next two weeks!