Raspberry and Apricot Granola

Raspberry and Apricot Granola

I usually wake up and have a problem of what would I like to have for breakfast and nearly always in a hurry! When you’re the only one in the house with a “normal” diet, it makes matters worse.

One doesn’t have breakfast, one only has Nutella Sandwich and Occasionally some roasted Balaleet, and the last one is on a fruit and nut only diet!

So I tend to suffer in the mornings and I can’t wait until I bake myself something because it takes time and the baby in the bump makes me so hungry!

Since I was home this morning waiting for the carpenter to come fix some decor on the wall, I decided why not make some granola which would last me well over a week.

I have recently purchased some dried raspberries (not freeze dried) and wanted to add some into my granola. I chose the other ingredients based on the raspberries!

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Salut spring, Spiced Mini Madeleines

Salut spring, Spiced Mini Madeleines

This week is when everything around you seems just right… well other than the palm trees starting to pollenate and everyone’s allergies increases! The weather is beautiful and it’s the perfect time for weddings, outdoor events and definitely gardening!

We’re working on the (minor) landscaping of our new house right now because March is the month to plant everything. That’s putting a smile on my face. Seeing it all come together after lots of hard work.

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Because everything seems happy outdoors, I wanted to make some “happy” mini madeleines. But of course, I had to spice them up a little! Why madeleines? Well because they’re just too cute to resist… yes i said the C word! So imagine madeleines which are mini! Isn’t that even more tempting?!

I was on one of my usual trips to Tavola (kitchen and tableware destination around the Middle East) and these mini madeleine silicone moulds just couldn’t have me leave without it! So I got one for myself and one for a lucky reader! That’s not it… there’s also a silicone and ceramic springform loaf pan! Both giveaways are from the brand LéKUé. I have used different items from this brand and they met my expectations! (I’m not easily pleased)

Don’t forget the Madeleines! Being bite-sized, I was about to pop them all in my mouth but then I remembered that I made these to take to my grandmother’s house for our Friday gathering.

The chocolate works wonders along with the spices and the fluffiness of the madeleine itself takes you somewhere else! Yet again, perfect for Spring! I’m going on an on about the weather and I probably won’t stop until I step outside and get slapped by the heat very soon.

I first thought I was too happy the weather is pleasant, because I’m trying to hide all the stress i’m feeling. Could that be it or could I just be emitting some positive energy to everyone around me? I do hope it’s the second one.

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Raspberry and Apricot Granola

Raspberry and Apricot Granola

Ever since I set foot in the kitchen I have been on a quest to learn more about different cuisines and how cultures, tradition and sometimes religion impact on people’s life.

This made me want to learn more about baking food from around the globe and every now and then “Emiratize” it!

Living in a fast developing country, which embraces diverse nationalities and cultures puts us in contact (either directly or indirectly) with a huge number of various cuisines, ingredients and of course experience.

All you have to do is look around you and you’ll get a new idea, a new ingredient, a way of cooking you’ve never heard of or even similarities in dishes from some countries with your own.

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I love adding an Emirati/Arabic touch to my cooking/baking. Not only does that makes it more personal but it also modernizes Emirati cuisine. This is something I have always had an interest in and wanted to share it with the world.

Emirati cuisine is all about spices, hospitality and lots of love. Yes, love! You wouldn’t feel the dish if it wasn’t made with love. That’s why I only like to learn how to make the Emirati dishes from my mother.

I’m sure you noticed my love for spices and how I include them a lot in most things I mak

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Last year I came across Pulla. A Finnish bread which is made with spices, and sometimes dried fruits. It definitely was on my baking list. After searching and reading more about Pulla, it’s history and how it’s made, I finally made it a few months ago.

There’s something about making bread that satisfies you deep inside and Pulla makes this satisfaction even better.

I called mine the Cardamom Braid

The recipe I adapted was from Saveur. It was very thorough and the outcome was great!

This recipe makes two loaves.

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When there's a will... Gluten free vegan date & almond squares!

When there's a will... Gluten free vegan date & almond squares!

When there’s a will, there’s a way they say…

I have a quite a few friends who have some sort of diet, whether they were gluten free, vegetarians, vegans or some with even worse restrictions! And recently my mother has come to know that she’s allergic to gluten, oats, dairy, egg and lots of other things too!

I have been wanting to try making recipes which were gluten free for my friends but never had the courage… I always had a feeling that it just wouldn’t taste the same! Only when we received my mother’s test results did I build the courage.

My friend Maha was one of the worst challenges I had to face… Her diet is so limited that I want to cry! She, on the other hand is very positive about it and she creates recipes to adapt to her food limits! (Which I admire about her) More on what I made for Maha’s visit in another post soon!

Then of course my awesome friend Patricia Millns who is vegan but doesn’t make a big fuss about it… I first thought of making vegan cookies because of Patricia and when she gave me the seal of approval, it was like a huge success for me!!

Cake

My mother (who is the best cook ever) on the other hand, wouldn’t just accept gluten free and vegan food. She wouldn’t understand that there has to be somewhat of a difference in the texture, taste or feel of the food!

This was my ultimate challenge. I feared baking for her but in the same time, I felt so bad that she can’t eat what I bake!

This is when I made these delicious squares! The pickiest person in this whole world (my eldest brother) liked them! This was an ultimate relief!

My boys were sick for over a week and I was so stressed that I needed to bake! I bake to relieve my stress! They were napping in the afternoon so I took this quick chance to make these before they woke up!

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Honey and Anise Korean Pear Flaugnarde

Honey and Anise Korean Pear Flaugnarde

I have said this more than once: “It’s been nearly a month”…

I admit that I lack self-discipline… and that I sometimes drift away especially when things get a little to stressful or busy!

This is how I have been for nearly a month and a half… running around like a headless chicken! If you see me, you would actually give me a little sticker that says: Super Tired Mom! Or maybe just a pat on my shoulder.

I’m sure many of you are in the same situation and I salute you all for the hard work!

Sometimes even when I have some free time (which is rare)… I don’t pick up my laptop to write a new post… but I go and bake something for the family to enjoy!

Yes… I do need chill pills… If you have some… please do share! :)

Two weeks ago I bought some Korean pears… they look like huge matte camel colored apples! I was intrigued as to what to do with them… and I didn’t want to eat them raw.

A Flaugnarde! (Pronounced Flaunyarde) Huh? what? Well… it’s a Clafoutis… but since it isn’t made with cherries then it’s technically a Flaugnarde. Fancy, isn’t it?!

Cookie

I love classic French baking in all sorts but I also love making them my way. Modernizing the flavors but still have that homey feel to it.

Korean pears aren’t only native to Korea but also Japan, and China. Countries such as Australia and the USA started cultivating it. This pear also has many other names such as Sand Pear, Chinese Pear, and Asian Pear.

Roasting the Korean Pears took a while since they have a high water content. I discarded some of the liquid after the roasting since I didn’t want the flaugnarde to end up being soggy.

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Delicious!

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