Smooth and Creamy Hummus

The season of parties and get-togethers is upon us! I love having a batch of hummus ready at the go, as it makes such a lovely appetizer. Although I already have already shared a yogurt based hummus recipe, this recipe is for a traditional hummus. Please spare yourself and your guests from the premade gloop sold in grocery stores, and spend 5 minutes to whizz together this delicious and healthy Middle Eastern dip. You won’t regret it, promise 😉

(Recipe adapted from Amanda’s Plate)

 

 

Hummus

(Overnight)

Yield: 5 – 6 Cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dried chickpeas
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ cup tahini
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • ½ – 1 cup water, as needed, cold
  • Olive oil, as needed, for garnish

Directions:

In a large bowl, soak chickpeas in cold water overnight.

Drain chickpeas and transfer to a large vessel. Cover with cold water and add baking soda. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook, skimming any foam that rises to the surface, until the chickpeas are cooked through and tender, about 30 to 45 minutes. Drain and cool slightly for a few minutes.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine cooked chickpeas, garlic, tahini, lemon juice, and salt. Begin running the food processor, and slowly add water until desired consistency is reached.

Transfer hummus to a shallow bowl and drizzle with olive oil.

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Pico De Gallo

Summer is quickly coming to an end, and with that I’m in make-the-most-of-it-mode.  Before you know it, we’ll be pumpkin spicing everything, and we’ll be longing for the days of backyard barbecues and gorgeous summer produce.

This recipe for Pico De Gallo, a tomato heavy side to eat alongside almost anything (chips, tacos, burgers, etc.) is an ode to the bounty of summer fruits and vegetables.  Tomatoes are being harvested in loads, and these beautiful gems are at the peak of their freshness.  Speaking of tomatoes, I planted 9 tomato plants in my yard this year, and although they’ve grown tremendous and look lush (they even have gorgeous yellow blooms!), I’ve had zero harvest.  Not a single tomato. Zero. Zilch. Nada.

😐 😐 😐

In any case, the grocery stores and farmers markets are packed to the brim with these beauties, so I’ve been filling the hole in my heart (from this year’s lackluster garden) with them.

(Recipe adapted from Serious Eats)

 

 

Pico De Gallo

Yield: 4 – 6 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ pounds tomatoes, diced
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup diced onion
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 jalapeno, minced

Directions:

In a large bowl, mix tomatoes and salt. Transfer to a colander and drain for 30 minutes. Discard liquid.

Return tomatoes to bowl and combine remaining ingredients. Mix and taste. Season with additional salt if necessary.

 

Chicken Tikka Box Patties

Ramadan Mubarak!

How blessed are we to have gotten another chance to experience the greatness of this month! I pray that the peace and blessings of this month are felt throughout the world ❤

***

With Ramadan comes an array of fried goodies for iftar (break-fast time)! My family has a no-fried-food rule during the week, but we do indulge during the weekends. These crispy treats, Chicken Tikka Box Patties, are a direct result of inspiration from our trip to Pakistan this past March. The filling is my version of a samosa I had eaten at someone’s house, and the wrap is inspired by a Box Pattie I had tried at a wedding. By the way, I had never heard of Box Patties until this recent trip. In all honesty, it’s just a fancy name for a square samosa 😉

Enjoy!

(I’ll include written instructions on how to fold the Box Patties, however here is a good link with photos for those of us who are visual learners.)

 

 

Chicken Tikka Box Patties

Yield: Varies

Ingredients:

Note: measurements are in actual measuring spoons/cups and not eating utensils.

  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons tikka masala (any brand)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • Green chilies, minced finely, to taste, optional
  • Samosa or spring roll wrappers, thawed, as needed
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • Water, as needed
  • Oil, as needed, to deep fry

Directions:

Prepare Filling:

Heat oil in a large vessel over medium-high heat. Add chicken, tikka masala, ginger-garlic paste, and black pepper. Stir and cook until the ground chicken is no longer raw and large chunks have broken up, about 10 minutes (if mixture is dry and sticking to the pan, add a few splashes of water). Add water, stir, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook until the water has dried up, stirring as needed, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely.

When completely cooled, add cilantro and green chilies (if using) and mix well. Set aside.

Prepare Flour Slurry:

In a small bowl, mix together all-purpose flour and enough water to create a thick yet spreadable paste. Set aside. This will be the binding paste for the patties.

Assemble Box Patties:

If using square spring roll wrappers, cut into 3 equal strips. Wrap wrappers in a damp paper towel to prevent drying out.

Place one strip vertically, and then another strip horizontally on top of it to create a plus sign. Brush a bit of the flour slurry where the two strips meet, so as to bind them together.

Place a tablespoon of the chicken filling in the center, making sure not to get too close to the edge.

Fold one of the strips over the center. Then in clockwise fashion, fold the remaining strips over the center. On the last strip, brush the slurry on over its entirety and seal the pastry.

Continue assembling the pastries with the remaining filling and set aside. Pastries can be frozen at this point.

Heat a large vessel with oil over medium heat. Add a few box patties at a time and fry until both sides are golden brown, a few minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels.

Burns Road Lentil Dumplings In Yogurt Sauce / Burns Road Ke Dahi Baray

Karachi is arguably (not debatable in my opinion 😉 ) the foodie destination of Pakistan. The city is a melting pot of ethnicities, and that aspect of it is best represented in the food Karachi has to offer. Admittedly, I didn’t get to enjoy as much of the street food I had hoped to, but whatever I did manage to get was amazing!

I had mentioned previously that I’ve come back so inspired from the amazing eats of Karachi, and this recipe here is a direct result of that! Burns Road is an area in Karachi that is famous for a few reasons- all food related, by the way. The dahi baray (lentil based dumplings that are soaked in a spiced yogurt mixture, and served cold) of Burns Road are famous throughout Karachi! While most recipes call for urud lentils, these are actually made from finely ground moong dal (split yellow mung beans) flour. What also sets these dahi baray apart from others is how small the fritters are. I would describe them as being no bigger than one or two bites (traditionally, the baray are medium-sized patties/fritters).

I hounded the internet and fell upon this recipe, adapted it and tested it a few times, and now I can confidently say that you don’t have to travel to Pakistan to enjoy Burns Road Dahi Baray 🙂

 

 

Burns Road Ke Dahi Baray

Yield: 4 Servings

Ingredients:

Note: measurements are in actual measuring spoons/cups and not eating utensils.

For Yogurt Mixture/ Dahi:

  • 3 cups yogurt
  • 2 ½ tablespoons sugar
  • A few tablespoons milk or water, as needed
  • 2 cups chickpeas

For Lentil Fritters/ Baray:

  • ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons split yellow mung bean flour/ moong dal flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ – ½ cup water, as needed
  • Oil, for frying

For Garnish:

  • ¾ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¾ teaspoon chaat masala

Directions:

Make Yogurt Mixture/ Dahi:

In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt and sugar until completely smooth. Add milk or water, as needed, and whisk until a smooth and thick consistency is reached. Add chickpeas and set aside.

Make Fritters/ Baray:

In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, and salt. Add water, a little bit at a time. Mix until smooth. The consistency of the batter should be so that when poured from a spoon, it falls off in dollops (not a steady stream).

Set aside a large bowl of cold water.

Heat oil in a large vessel over medium-high heat. To check the temperature of the oil, drop a small amount of batter into the oil. If the oil starts bubbling and the batter starts making its way upward, the temperature is perfect. Stir the batter, and use a teaspoon to drop spoonful’s of batter into the oil. Cook until the fritters are golden all around. Transfer to the water and allow them to soak for a few minutes. Squeeze the water out of the fritters using the palms of both hands, and arrange them in a serving dish.

Pour the prepared yogurt mixture over the fritters.

Make Garnish:

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and lightly roast. Transfer seeds to a bowl and coarsely crush. Set aside.

Add red pepper flakes and chaat masala to the skillet and cook until lightly toasted, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl with crushed cumin seeds and mix well. Sprinkle the spice mixture on top of the dahi baray (yogurt and fritters).

Serve cold.

Guest Post: Faaiza of Modest Munchies

Today we have my very close friend Faaiza, who blogs over at Modest Munchies, sharing Iftar (break-fast meal) with us!  Before we get to the delicious recipe, let me tell you a little bit about Faaiza. She is based out of Australia, and her blog features delicious recipes, reviews, and even awesome Islamic based crafts for kids! She’s a total creative at heart, and her work shows just that.  Also, Faaiza along with Amnah of Little Life of Mine have just released their new app Muslimify! It’s a photo editing app that can be used to give your photos some flair using Islamic themed editing tools.  It’s a very fun and user-friendly app, and I would encourage everyone to take a look at it! Below is a photo I edited using the Muslimify app; it’s a photo of some string lights I have hanging, and I added a filter and that cute Ramadan Mubarak “sticker” (is that what they’re called?)! Totes adorbs, right? 🙂

IMG_1679

Salaam All and a happy Ramadan to you all. I’m so glad to be here on Henna’s blog today. It’s been a long time coming, and I already feel at home. I’ve had the honour of having Henna over on my blog and and even hosted a virtual baby shower in her honour. Ahh, the joys of the internet. Some of the biggest joys is being able to reach out to so many people and of course making new friends, like Henna. If there was an internet version of a BFF Henna would be mine, hands down!

I was recently featured in a Buzzfeed Community Roundup for Healthy Iftar ideas. The round up included my pasta and bean salad as well as these baked chicken tenders from I Knead to Eat. After going through the list with Mr. Munchies I knew this would be one I would have to try, Mr Munchies loves fried chicken and a healthier baked version sounded like a good idea.

Sunday rolled around and I couldn’t decide what to make for Iftar, when I remembered those baked tenders. I quickly ran to the grocery store and grabbed some corn flakes as well as some chicken from the butcher. I set to work and prepped everything ready for the oven. Between running to the grocery and coming back to prep the chicken I had lost track of time and it was getting too close to Iftar. I decided frying them would be the best option with the time I had left. We usually try to be healthy in Ramadan, but it was Sunday and who can resist ‘fried’ chicken right? They were served with chilli mayo, the perfect accompaniment.

Here’s my adapted version below:

Crispy Cornflake Fried Chicken

Crispy Cornflake Fried Chicken

 

500g chicken breast

1 tsp crushed garlic

2 teaspoon paprika

1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

1 1/2 teaspoon dried onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups flour

6 cups corn flakes + 1/2 cup

2 eggs

Oil for frying

 

Chilli mayo

1/3 cup mayo with 2 teaspoons of your favourite chilli sauce mixed in

 

Wash and clean your chicken breasts. Slit each piece lengthways along the middle. Place a piece of baking paper on the chicken. With a kitchen mallet (or rolling pin) pound the pieces so they’re an even thickness. Cut these pieces into even sizes, about the size of chicken tenders. Place the chicken in a bowl and mix in the garlic Set the chicken aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. In a food processor blend the 6 cups of corn flakes, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Pour this into a bowl. Crush the remaining half cup with your hands and mix it into the crushed cornflake mixture. This creates chunkier bits for added crunch. Place th flour in a shallow bowl. Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat them well. Set up your bowls in order of flour, egg, cornflakes mix. Dunk your chicken in flour and dust off excess. Drop your floured pieces in the egg, coat it well then let the excess drain off before dropping into the corn flake mix. Coat the egged pieces well in the corn flour mix and set aside.

Once you’ve finished all the crumbing. Place a pot of oil on a medium to high heat. Once your oil is hot place in a few pieces of chicken at a time (this will depend on the size of pot you use, and the amount of oil inside, do not overcrowd the pot). Fry for a few minutes until the pieces reach a golden brown.  Cut through thicker pieces to ensure they are cooked through, they should look white inside with no hint of pink. Alternatively you could place the chicken on a tray in a pre heated oven of 200c and bake for 20 mins, turning after 10 minutes of baking. Again, cut through thicker pieces to ensure they are cooked through.

Serve with chilli mayo. Yum!