Samak Koufta ~ Emirati Fish Cakes

ย  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… ๐Ÿ™‚ 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. ๐Ÿ™‚ 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”. ย  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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Simple Tuna Stir Fry

ย  I have yet not recovered from the overdose of cheesecakes of the Blogging Marathon. ๐Ÿ˜‰ At times, too much sweet can also cause you lethargy and laziness. Even though I am still the “BST”, I am trying to reduce my sugar intake gradually, taking into account my constant weight gain over the past few years. I don’t know if I need to “thank” blogging for that, but to an extend, I must say “yes”. Even though I make very small quantities of dessert, it somehow ends up majorly into my system and considering that I have a super cooperative metabolism system helps in adding up the flab all over. You will still keep seeing a lot of posts, since they are all from my drafts. I am on a mission to go on slow as far as my cooking escapades are concerned till I shed off a little extra… 

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Meen Masala ~ Fish Masala

ย  I wish I could eat fish whenever I wish for. When umma is around, fish is a part of lunch every weekday but I am normally not present during that time. I can’t say I am crazy about fish but I get bowled over by a good fish fry or a delicious fish curry. I guess it can be the signs of a Keralite. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Here are some of the fish recipes on the blog, if you would like to refer back to… Tomato Fish Curry Meen Thoran ~ Fish Scramble Fish Makkanwala ~ Creamy Fish Curry Kerala Style Fish Masala Meen Arappu Roast ~ Fish Roast in Coconut Milk and Masalasย – one of my favorites! ย  This Fish Masala is cooked in a shallot based gravy and enriched with some tomato paste instead of whole tomatoes, to give it a nice pop of colors. Apart from the peeling… 

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Thalassery Chemmeen Biriyani ~ Thalassery Style Prawn Biriyani

ย  The feeling of achievement is immense, isn’t it? I am glad that my little attempt to bring together a small group of bloggers is faring fairly well. We are in the third month of our challenge and I am sincerely hoping that we continue moving forward well, InShaAllah… ๐Ÿ™‚ ย  For this month’s Muslim Food Blogger Challenge, the challenge was to make “Biriyani”. Alhamdulillah, after trying so many versions, I can confidently handle a biriyani, though there are times when I conveniently screw it up too. ๐Ÿ˜€ Those are called “bad biriyani days (BBD)”. ๐Ÿ˜‰ A biriyani is usually a very intimidating dish for many, but let me tell you, once you get a hang of it, it is quite easy to make. One major thing you need to learn is to how much to cook the rice. The rice is never cooked fully in the first stage, it… 

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Tomato Fish Curry

ย  I first tried this curry from a Lakshmi Nair cookbook when I was hit by the cooking bug. ย Lakshmi Nair is an iconic name among Malayalees. I guess you can credit her show on TV that made Malayalee housewives move out of the cocoon of cooking only Keralite dishes and trying out variety in food – and that list includes my umma as well, somebody who hates to try something new. ๐Ÿ™‚ Every household would have at least one of her book as a reference if they want to try something new. From whatever I have tried from her books, you can follow the recipe without making too many adjustments and it comes out really good. I already have a few recipes on the blog which is courtesy of her: ย  Potato Tomato Masala Chicken Kadai Mutton Thengapaal Curry Simple Butter Chicken Cabbage Capsicum Masala ย  Somehow anything with… 

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Varutharacha Meen Curry ~ Malabar Fish Curry with Roasted Coconut

ย  If you are from Malabar, then you definitely need to know your fish curry well. Making the mulakittathu – the red fish curry, which I have already shared two versions here and here, is literally a cake walk but getting the varutharachathu right is a little difficult task. “Varutharachathu” literally means “roasted and ground”. The base of such curries is a roasted-till-brown coconut along with some spices, and ground till smooth. I already have a few varutharacha curries on the blog: Varutharacha Erachi Curry Varutharacha Urulakizhangu Curry Varutharacha Kozhi Curry ย  I have always felt that getting the consistency right for the fish curry is important. As for the meat curries, you can add water and dilute it, but for fish, the flavor itself goes off, especially since we add turmeric. The next is the challenge of making limited amount, since I serve folks who have pigeon stomachs. ๐Ÿ˜•… 

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Kilikkoodu ~ Bird’s Nest Croquettes

ย  There is never a dearth of snacks as far as Malabar is concerned. Give them a mystery box and they will come up with ideas that you would have never imagined in your life! I am not so creative, if you really ask me. HD taunts saying that I only know to cook from the book while my BFF (remember her fish thoran? Yum…) tells me that even getting delicious food after cooking from the book is a blessing. I love you dear, you always make me feel good… ๐Ÿ˜€ ย  Kilikkoodu is nothing but croquettes coated with vermicelli, giving it an appearance of a bird’s nest. That is what the name of the snack means too! The filling is normally of cutlet, whichever way you like to make, the only difference is that instead of rolling them in bread crumbs, you roll them into a plate of crushed… 

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Fish Potato Pie

ย  At times, all we need is some comfort food for lunch or dinner. Even though I am always at loggerheads whether the folks would love it, I have always get good responses from them to my utter surprise. Taking from my experience of making the potpie and seeing how much the folks enjoyed – and even requesting it several times – I wanted to try this pie as soon as I saw it in a Vanitha Pachakam magazine I picked up while coming back from home last year. There is nothing in it – very straightforward, easy to make and very filling too! With a bunch of fussy eaters at home, I hardly had any leftovers for this. Go ahead, and make this for some comfort food. This would be amazing with a fresh salad on the side, but nobody had the time to wait for the salad and… 

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Malabar Chemmeen Roast ~ Malabar Prawns Stir Fry

ย  The feeling of wanting to go on leave has never been so high in many years. Even though it is hot here during summers, I am fine with the weather, however this year has been the height. With summers coming late, only by early June, we thought it should be fine but it has been really unbearable. The humidity is at its sticky best, the air is thick with dust and standing in the kitchen or moving out in the mornings is a literal nightmare. While I hear that it is heavily raining back home with some respite here and there, I can’t but wait to go back and have my lazy days. However, past experience has shown that the rains tend to run away by the time I reach home. ๐Ÿ˜• Today’s call to D only aggravated my fears of seeing minimal rains. But still, as long as… 

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Green Baked Salmon

ย  Life has been a mad rush for the past couple of weeks. Long drives, lot of moving around, lack of sleep coupled up with work is not helping me much, but I am enjoying the time till it is around. Sometimes, we appreciate what was ours only once it is passed, right? Having learned that lesson several times, trying to make the best of the day with the whole family around and making it as much enjoyable as I can… ๐Ÿ™‚ ย  I love salmon, even though it is comparitively expensive to other fish. Once in a while, I buy fillet and sear it with salt and pepper, and have it loaded up with lots of salad – totally delicious. But as soon as I saw this post on FB by one of my favorite blogs, Blessings From My Kitchen (she had done a guest post for me eons… 

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Meen Choru ~ Malabar Style Fish Rice

ย  Including more fish into my family’s diet is something that I am struggling with, just like how I struggle to include vegetables! Even though I have a carnivorous bunch, they are more bend towards chicken, and then comes mutton and beef. But fish is not something they like. ๐Ÿ™ I prefer fish more than the other non-veg but I don’t like to make it alone for me, so find ways to incorporate them somehow and make them eat. ย  Today’s recipe is the Malabar style fish pilaf – I have already shared two versions of this rice: one with meat and the other with chicken. So this is the last version available, till I hopefully discover more such similar rice recipes. ๐Ÿ˜€ I have tried this rice with fresh fish and frozen fish fillets for ease, and I must say that fresh fish wins the battle hands down. It… 

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Koonthal Porichathu ~ Squid Fry

ย  Even though I love fish, the folks at home are not very fond of it. This includes the kids. It’s not they don’t eat, but fish alone as a meal does not satisfied them in any way. With the goodness of fish, this should be a meal I should be trying to be including at least once a week, but most of the time, that doesn’t happen. ๐Ÿ™ Especially with me on a vegan diet, the cooking of fish has literally gone to zero. I am somehow surprised that none of my umma’s genes have gone to the kids. Umma and my sister are fish crazy. Umma seems to have mellowed down with age but my sister would eat fish morning, afternoon and evening. After moving to US, due to the lack of fresh fish, she has limited her eating but once she comes home, she fills herself with… 

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Croquette De Poisson ~ Fish Cakes

ย  I don’t know why I keep forgetting to record some of the blogger meets I had recently. A couple of weeks ago, Zomato had their first blogger conference in UAE and it was a lovely event filled with discussions and presentation. I attended them along with Huma and Fajee and we had a lovely time along with Anamika. It was nice meeting Fareeha and Razena for the first time. This weekend, Huma and I had the chance to meet up Mayuriji, who was on a holiday in Dubai. We caught up an hour and a half over some coffee and some interesting talks. It is always nice to connect to fellow bloggers over the love for food. HD never seems to understand how I could be meeting with people whom I really do not know, but since they happen to be ladies, ย he is fine with it. ๐Ÿ˜‰ ย … 

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Chemmeen Kinnapathiri ~ Malabar Prawn Rice Pancakes

ย  A lovely read and a slide I want to save up here… ๐Ÿ™‚ ย  ย  Malabar is so well known for their variety of non-vegetarian snacks. Give the ladies there a bucket of eggs, lots of chicken, meat and fish and they will come up with varieties of snacks you can never imagine! This is one of them. Even though I don’t have prawns, I do make it for my family or when I have relatives visiting. Ever since I saw this video, I was waiting for a chance to make it and the chance came when there was a get together of relatives at my aunt’s house, so I naturally volunteered to carry something along with me. Making this also gave me a chance to pull out my new steamer! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Kinnapathiri is nothing but a steamed flat bread in layers. It is prepared by steaming the batter… 

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Meen Thoran ~ Fish Scramble

ย  I never knew a dish called “meen thoran” existed, till I was duly informed by my BFF during one of our chats. You know how women are… we should be asking a mandatory question, “What is special for lunch/ dinner?” ๐Ÿ˜‰ Even if you don’t make anything special, you would love to make it sound special. Hehe… On a weekend, while chatting to her, she mentioned that for lunch, she had made fish curry and this to go with rice. Talking about this friend, I always wonder how Allah puts people into your life. We went separate ways after Grade 10, albeit a little sour note. I went on to study here, while she got married immediately after Grade 11, which is something very usual among our community, though it is on the decline now. She now stays in Oman and is blessed with 7 beautiful kids, MaShaAllah… ๐Ÿ™‚… 

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