Chocolate Peanut Butter Mug Cake

  Last month, I decided to give the book review segment a miss as the last Saturday coincided with the starting of Ramadan. We are almost ending Ramadan now, and looking forward to Eid – which basically means the morning prayers, the get-togethers, the family meetings and lots of good food. 🙂 While we look forward to it, I thought let me leave you all with the review for this month, while InShaAllah, will come back with more recipes after our little break.   We all love small treats once in a while, don’t we? Especially when we crave for a cake, but don’t want to make a whole cake or share it with anybody else, then we do prefer going for mug cakes. They are really quick to make, satiate your cravings without tempting you to go for more again, which isn’t the case if you make a whole… 

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Cassata Ice Cream Cake

  As we bid farewell to this blessed month and move on to Eid-ul-Fitr, it is more like stock taking of what we have achieved in the month. Ramadan is a month where there are a lot of restrictions – whether it is food, water or relationships; when there is more emphasis on giving away a part of your wealth to charity – compulsory and otherwise; when there is the requirement of keeping a tab on our habits and characters. Eid ul Fitr marks the removal of all those restrictions, however it points out to another fact – that if we will, we can stick to a lot of self discipline in our lives. If we will, we can give up our bad habits and grow on the good habits inculcated during this month.   This festival, though is marked by sadness of the disappearance of immense blessings of the… 

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Dum Aaloo Biriyani ~ Potato Biriyani

  We are now in the last ten days of Ramadan, which is considered to be the most blessed days of this month. Even though the consensus is bend towards the odd number days to be considered “Laylathul Qadr”, it is recommended that the same level of worship is maintained all throughout the ten days or till Eid is declared. I had already shared some information regarding this night in this post during my initial days of blogging. However, many people still don’t realize its importance and end up spending majority of the days and nights in shopping for Eid. It is something that happens not only where I stay, but back home too.   I always make it a point to finish my Eid shopping before Ramadan begins, yes, with the full thought that we may not even live to see the day! But I also feel it is… 

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Orange Mango Juice

  With the summers really peaking bad, we drink a lot of fluids from Iftar time. I always make sure I make a juice, especially since the girls love some of it at times. My usual repeats are rose milk and dates lassi, since they are easy to put together and filling too.   These days, there are a lot of oranges and mangoes in the market, so obviously this is another choice. A very simple juice combining the goodness of mangoes and oranges, this is very refreshing when served really cold on a hot day. I usually squeeze out the juice off the oranges and then place them in the freezer so that they are almost hardening up. I then blitz them up with the mango, so you get a feel of a slushy. 🙂 Do try this combination if you haven’t yet!   PST: Not much of writing… 

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Be My Guest – Vermicelli Cups with Kesar Rabdi Mousse

It is the third Saturday of the month. Days are being replaced by weeks and weeks by months in quick succession. It is with a tinge of sadness that the days of Ramadan are moving at such a quick pace, that you wish you could hold on to it for longer. Alas, that’s not the case… We are now in the throngs of the final ten days and very soon it will be time for celebration, and then… the feeling that follows is an unexplained emptiness, as though something precious has just left from our hands… We all go through this every year during Ramadan and this time, it is not going to be different…   Prior to Eid, I thought why not have somebody to come over on this space. I felt nobody was as apt as Nusrath, who blogs at “The Food Factory“. If you remember, I had… 

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Tabbouleh ~ Middle Eastern Parsley Salad

  This month, being Ramadan, for the MENA Cooking Challenge, we were given a free reign. We were asked to choose any recipe that is normally cooked during this holy month in the MENA region. The first thing that came into my mind was salad – and of course, what better than Tabbouleh!   One good thing about this region is the incorporation of a routine of soup and salad into their daily eating habits. You will see that before every meal, even in restaurants, a small serving of soup and salad is always provided. It is a mandatory part of their eating habit, unlike our Indian style of mostly having only onions as salad and never any soup! I have tried hard this Ramadan to introduce a soup and salad routine, but barring from a day or two, I wasn’t really successful, thanks to the heat in the kitchen… 

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Sago Rose Milk

  Sometimes I peek back and wonder, where did the month go? We are almost finishing the second ten days of Ramadan and moving towards the last ten days of the month, considered to be the best days of the year itself. Somehow days are flying in full speed, just like water slipping through the fingers. It makes me feel very uneasy, making me think if I am taking full advantage of these blessed days. May Allah accept our little deeds done by the best of our capacities… Aameen…   Meanwhile, I will leave you with this delicious drink, which I had make when I saw this post. I love anything with sago, though I don’t cook very frequently with it, since it can be very tricky. This drink is basically an adapted sago payasam, cooled and sweetened with rose syrup, but unlike payasam which is usually served warm, this… 

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Kaala Chana Chaat ~ Black Chickpeas Chaat

  HD has this annoying habit of bringing in fried snacks from the nearby restaurant just before Iftar time. His intention is good – to give me relief from having to make something for tea time. But normally, I never do unless there is a request from the girls for something. They are not too much into fried snacks, and their liking is very limited to a small variety. When he buys, he brings in quite a lot and you end up over eating without even realizing it. 😕 The only thing I used to like of what he brings was this simple Kala Chana Chaat, which I now end up making it at home when I crave for it. This year, after so much coaxing, he has almost stopped bringing in snacks – such a relief! – though a couple of times he decided he must get some. 😀  … 

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Jelly Custard Cups

  For this month’s Muslim Food Bloggers Challenge, the theme selected was “Ramadan Memories”. When the post is happening in the midst of this beautiful month, there is no better theme to be chosen. While generating the theme, there was only one recipe on my mind and it was “Jelly Custard Cups”.   There is nothing fancy in this recipe, it is always custard topped with jelly or viceversa. The very first time I had it was when we went to a family friend’s house for Iftar as kids. This was one of the dish served during Iftar time and I ate around two cups of it shamelessly! 😀 I am sure they didn’t mind it since I was small at that time. As fate is, this family ended up being related now, when umma’s cousin’s daughter got married to their son! I don’t have to tell you how surprised… 

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Vegan Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips and Walnut

  The days of Ramadan are passing by fast. As this post goes for publishing, it is already the second ten days of this holy month. During the last week, I was listening to a Malayalam lecture and the main topic was of three virtues that Allah has not mentioned how much is the reward – Sabr (patience), Afuww (forgiving) and Sawm (fasting). For every other good deed we do, there is a number of reward associated with it, however for the above, there is no quantification of reward except that He will reward those who possess these quantities abundantly. That got me thinking. “Indeed, the patient will be given their reward without any account.” (Surah Az-Zumar: part of Verse 10) “And the retribution for an evil act is an evil one like it, but whoever pardons and makes reconciliation – his reward is (due) with Allah. Indeed, He does… 

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Arseeyah ~ Emirati Rice Chicken Gruel

  I was ready with the Samak Koufta and Shorbat Adas well before in time, however this dish had to wait till the start of Ramadan to be made. Arseeyah is considered to be one of the Emirate’s comfort food. What is not comfort in it? Rice, chicken and some simple spices amalgamate into a wonderful dish, so very close to Harees. During my casual browsing, I landed up on this blog and it was love at first sight. It was one of the few blogs on the world wide web which had some Emirati recipes. I wish she would have continued blogging since the blog hasn’t been updated since Ramadan 2013. 🙁 Anyway, it is a treasure trove of a lot of simple recipes and I have almost bookmarked the entire blog to try! 😀 The one recipe that did pique my interest instantly was this dish. I did go… 

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Shorbath Adas ~ Emirati Lentil Soup

  I have this habit of buying food magazines that get released during the month of Ramadan. Every year, magazines like BBC Good Food, Spinneys Food and Gourmet release special Ramadan editions, containing very interesting meal ideas and recipes for the month of Ramadan. For the last three years, they have been including a small section of local recipes contributed by home chefs, bloggers and restaurant owners, and I have been marking them up to make. One recipe that I had tried previously was this delicious Emirati falooda, which also happens to be a drink that features frequently during this month. This comforting soup that I am sharing today is likewise adapted from a recipe that appeared in the BBC Good Food Ramadan 2015 issue.   Every Arab country calls their lentil soup “Shorbath Adas”. “Shorba” is soup, and “adas” is lentil. Even though the base ingredients may be the same, the… 

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Samak Koufta ~ Emirati Fish Cakes

  It is always nice to come back to my 3-back-to-back series. It has always received a lovely response from all of you, and it keeps me motivated to choose the themes based on the ongoing season as well, Alhamdulillah… 🙂 After all, the major motivation for us bloggers is definitely our enthusiastic readers who come to check out and keep track of what we post, and even trying them out and forwarding us pictures. 🙂 Since it is the holy month of Ramadan and I am taking advantage of it in a beautiful country called UAE, I decided to keep the theme as “Ramadan Specials of the UAE”.   Those who have observed their sawm (fasts) in UAE very well know how the feeling is. The whole country gets a spiritual lift during this blessed month. You can see tents sprouting up everywhere that provide Iftar meals to each… 

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Chocolate Oatmeal

  During fasting, we are always on a lookout for a simple yet filling meal. I have always felt that oats is an amazing staple to have in your kitchen during this time. First of all, it cooks amazingly first and tastes good if made in your own twists too. You can keep your porridge simple and go for topping of your choice in the forms of fruits and/or nuts. I have already mentioned in my suhoor post about many oats options already on the blog.   It got me thinking, why haven’t I included any of the oats with chocolate, especially when it is one of my favorite ingredients? Hmm… Finally here is the cooked version of chocolate oats. Just like any cooked oats, it comes through together in minutes and gets over soon too. I have made it with cocoa powder, which can be replaced with some chocolate,… 

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Gothambu Kaachiyathu/ Ooral Kaachiyathu ~ Malabar Wheat Drink | “Joy from Fasting to Feasting X”

  Some posts come with a tinge of sadness. I remember when I was just months into my blogging journey. A message popped up on my FB messenger from Lubna, asking me to do a guest post for her Ramadan series, which she so lovingly calls “Joy from Fasting to Feasting”. Being a newbie, that message from a seasoned blogger gave me goosebumps. I really didn’t know how to react but finally I got back to my senses, and I said a “yes”. Luck was not in my favor and I was not able to give her a proper post, but she assured me that the post had done really well.   After that, I have been a regular fixture at her space during all the Ramadans. I have excitedly worked on each post, and Alhamdulillah, she has always loved it. So this time, I was really waiting for her… 

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