Eid Eats 2016: Zesty Spice Roasted Chicken

Eid Eats 2016 is officially here! This “party” is one that I look forward to all year 🙂  With Ramadan coming to an end, it’s fun to get together with other bloggers and enjoy the festive atmosphere.  Do you want to come to the party but worried that it’s too late?  Fret not my friend, there’s still time! You’ve got until Wednesday, July 6, to submit a recipe.  Just follow the guidelines found here, and you’re in!  I, along with my co-hosts Asiya of Chocolate and Chillies (check out what she’s sharing here), and Sarah of Flour and Spice (and the yummies that she’s sharing here) would love for you to join us!


Click on this graphic to submit your addition to #EidEats2016. You can also click here to check out all of the yummies everyone has brought.

This year, Eid Eats falls on my father’s birthday.  I had decided beforehand that I wanted to make something that would make him proud.  My father was a huge fan of roasted poultry (chicken and turkey). He was the honoree turkey-carver at every Thanksgiving gathering. He used to enjoy revving the electric knife and getting down to business on the bird. Friends (and their children) would stand around and watch him, and he would hand feed little pieces to those standing closest to him.

I decided to make a zesty spice rubbed roasted chicken (adapted from here) because I knew it would be something that he would have enjoyed.  Prior to this attempt, I had never roasted a chicken before. I don’t know about you, but I had so much fear going into it! Afterwards however, I wondered why the heck I took this long to attempt something so simple! Please, don’t be a scaredycat like me. It’s a simple dish to prepare, and it really adds a classy touch to any spread.




Zesty Spice Roasted Chicken

Yield: 4 to 6 Servings


  • 1 (3 – 3 ½ pound) whole chicken, skin removed
  • 1 tablespoon + 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, divided
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili powder
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ½ lemon
  • Potatoes, as needed, diced into 2-inch chunks (or baby potatoes cut in half)
  • Chopped cilantro, for garnish


In a small bowl, combine 1-tablespoon butter, salt, paprika, basil, oregano, black pepper, and red chili powder.

Place chicken in a large container and rub with spice mix, making sure to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate, allowing the meat to marinate for several hours (overnight is best).

Remove chicken from the refrigerator and preheat oven to 450°F. In a baking pan, place potatoes in an even layer. Place chicken on top and stuff the cavity with garlic and lemon. Tie the chicken legs together with baking twine. Brush chicken with remaining 3 tablespoons butter, making sure to pour a few spoonfuls into the cavity as well.

Roast chicken in preheated oven for 20 minutes. Reduce temperature to 400°F and cook for an additional 40 minutes, until the internal temperature has reached a minimum of 165°F. Remove from oven, cover lightly with foil, and allow it to rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve garnished with cilantro.

Eid Eats 2015: Falooda

Eid Eats 2015, hosted by Sarah of Flour and Spice, Asiya of Chocolate and Chillies, and myself, has finally arrived! Welcome!

I’ve been really excited to see what everyone is “bringing” to our fancy-pants party 🙂
To submit your post, simply click on the Eid Eats graphic below and follow the given instructions (submissions will be open form 7/15 through 7/18). Be sure to follow the guidelines (found here), and enjoy the party!

Also, whether you choose to bring something or not, hang around and check out the fun things everyone else is sharing. You’re sure to find some lovely Eid inspiration 🙂

Today I’m sharing with you all a delicious glass of cooling Falooda. Falooda is a traditional Pakistani/Indian dessert-beverage. Everyone seems to have their own spin on it, but generally speaking it is a concoction of milk, rose syrup, basil seeds, jello, vermicelli, and either kulfi or ice cream. The recipe I’m sharing today, really isn’t a recipe at all. All of the ingredients are layered in a tall glass, in as much or as little quantity desired. It’s a great treat to make and share on Eid because it screams fancy, and it is a quick dessert that can be pulled together in no time 🙂

While we’re at it, you can check out what Asiya is sharing here, and what Sarah is sharing here.  Also, if you would like to see the yummies our friends shared last year, you can check out Eid Eats 2014 here.

And my dear friends, Eid Mubarak! May this holiday season bring you and your families peace and happiness!




Yield: Varies


  • Falooda sev/noodles
  • Basil seeds
  • Jelly crystals
  • Rooh Afza (Pakistani rose syrup)
  • Kulfi or ice cream
  • Milk, optional
  • Crushed almonds or pistachios


Prepare Falooda sev according to package instructions. Once cooked, store immersed in cold water.

Soak basil seeds in plenty of water. Seeds will swell up and double in size after some time (overnight soak is best).

Prepare jelly crystals according to package instructions. Allow it to set. Once it is completely cooled, cut into small pieces.

In tall glasses, pour a small amount of Rooh Afza as the first layer. Add desired amount of Falooda sev (with some of its water). Add a spoonful of basil seeds, followed by jelly crystals. Top with a scoop of kulfi or ice cream, and garnish with nuts. If the Falooda seems too thick, add a splash of milk.

Serve immediately.


Sandwich Maker Cakes

Happy Eid/ Eid Mubarak!


I would like to wish you all a very happy Eid!  I hope your day was spent well, as ours was.  We spent our Eid with my in-laws, where my mother in-law cooked an amazing spread and I was in charge of desserts.  I made Gulab Jamun, Mawa Cake, and Qawami Seviyaan (recipe coming soon).  One dessert that I didn’t make, which is usually made in our home on Eid and other special occasions, was a Custard Trifle.  It’s a favorite on my in-law’s side of the family.  It consists of a layer of vanilla cake, any flavored custard, some nuts and shredded coconut, and sometimes a layer of Jello.

Whenever I’ve made this Trifle in the past, I’ve had to first bake a pound cake for the cake layer, which isn’t really an issue if it weren’t for the extra time and preparation.  I no longer need to bake a pound cake to prepare this familial Custard Trifle.  I stumbled upon a genius recipe on Ambreen’s blog, which not only produces soft and absorbent cakes, but also allows me to utilize the sandwich maker that I bought in a rush last year on the morning after Thanksgiving.  After sitting in my cabinet for almost a year without being touched, I have finally found a reason to use my $4 Black Friday find 🙂

Oh and I forgot to mention the best thing about this past Eid!  I finally met, face-to-face, one of absolute favorite bloggers, Asiya!  We were visiting some family who happened to live near her, and Asiya graciously invited us to her home.  My husband, Zuni, and I had a wonderful time talking and spending time with her and her family.  We can’t wait until the next time we meet!




Sandwich Maker Cakes

Yield:  8 – 10 Cakes


  • ½ cup oil
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour


In a large bowl, beat oil and sugar until thoroughly combined.  Add eggs and vanilla one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Fold in baking powder and flour.

Turn on sandwich maker and wait until the red light turns off.  Lightly grease the inner plates of the sandwich maker by spraying them with nonstick spray or brush with oil.

Spoon batter into the cavities of the sandwich maker until full but not overflowing.  Close the lid and allow the cakes to cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until golden brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

If the cakes aren’t ready, cook for longer, making sure to check after every minute.

Cakes taste best eaten right away.

Pakistani Vermicelli Pudding/ Sheer Khurma

Happy Eid/ Eid Mubarak!

Eid signifies the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.  It is marked by a special prayer in the morning, followed by feasting and visiting friends and family throughout the day.

Every family celebrates Eid differently.  Some like to host gatherings in their homes, while others like to be out and about.  Some families like to celebrate for three consecutive days, while others celebrate one.  With all of these differences, there is one Eid tradition that is found in nearly every Pakistani/Indian Muslim household that is the same- the making and eating of Sheer KhurmaSheer Khurma is a type of pudding that consists of Pakistani style vermicelli, milk, and sugar.  Some folks add dried dates to their Sheer Khurma, while others may add rice or tapioca.  The variations are truly limitless.

The recipe I’m sharing today is one that is special to my Mummi.  I grew up eating this Sheer Khurma every Eid, and she shared her recipe with me on my last Eid before getting married.  Since then, I have been using her tried and true recipe without fail 🙂


Sheer Khurma

Yield:  8 Servings


  • 150-200 grams Pakistani style vermicelli (¾ of standard size package), torn up into 2-inch pieces
  • ½ cup tapioca
  • 8 cups milk
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 5 cardamoms
  • Pinch saffron
  • Few drops kewra essence
  • Sliced nuts for garnish


Preheat oven to lowest setting, 170° to 180°F.

Spread vermicelli in an even layer over a baking sheet and lightly toast in oven for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and set aside.

In a small saucepan, rinse and drain the tapioca.  Return tapioca to pan and add enough water to cover.  Raise heat to medium, and allow the water to come to a boil.  Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large heavy-bottomed pot, combine milk, sugar, cardamoms, and saffron and cook over medium heat.  Once the milk comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and slowly add roasted vermicelli and tapioca (with water).  Cook until desired thickness is reached, ranging from 30 to 60 minutes.  Be sure to stir once in a while to prevent burning.

Remove from heat and add kewra essence.  Garnish with sliced nuts.

Sheer Khurma can be served warm or cold.  Refrigerate any leftovers.