Leena’s Chocolate Oreo Icebox Cake

Eid Mooo Baaarak to all my family and friends celebrating Eid-ul-Adha! This year has shown us so many unique sights and one of them has been the 1000 pilgrims performing Hajj while practicing social distancing and wearing masks. SubhanAllah! How lucky are those pilgrims to be able to get this once in a lifetime opportunity…

Shahi Tukray – The Royal Dessert

Shahi Tukray is a very popular and deliciously rich dessert that has its origin in the Mughal rein (Shahi means Royal and Tukra means piece). This is the traditional Indian cousin to the American bread pudding. Bread is deep fried in pure ghee and then soaked in a reduced milk mixture flavored with fragrant cardamom…

Falooda – the summer drink

Summer for me means “Falooda” for dessert every other day as this is easily one of my top favorites!! This sweet ice cream drink/dessert is very popular in the South Asian cuisine. It’s also a very refreshing drink with soaked sweet basil seeds & a cooling rose syrup – making it perfect to be enjoyed…

Chicken Shawerma with rice & spicy sumac roasted potatoes

The most spiritual and exciting time for Muslims all over the world is upon us. As the holy month of Ramadan begins, I wish you all the strength and courage to face all the challenges of life. This year Ramadan will be very different. Covid_19 has forced us to stay at home instead of celebrating…

Ramadan with kids!

Ramadan Mubarak! The most spiritual and exciting time for Muslims all over the world is almost here. At sundown tomorrow, the Muslim holiday RAMADAN will begin and continue for a month. Although Ramadan is best known as a time of fasting, there is actually more to this spiritual month. It is a time to reflect…

Gulab Jamun 🌟

Gulab jamuns and I have been in a long term relationship since forever. If any one ever asks me what is my top favorite mithai of all time then without hesitation I will say Gulab jamun. The delicious dough balls drenched in sugary, sticky syrup and perfumed with kewra, rose water and cardamom occupy a…

Classic Blondies

Classic chocolate-chip blondies perfect for some weekend baking. These blondies are soft, chewy and they take less than a half hour to make! Chock full of indulgent chocolate, delicious toasted coconut and crunchy walnuts. Yes, yes and yes! If you love chocolate chip cookies and brownies than blondies are sure to win you over! These…

Red curry shrimp noodle soup

We are in uncertain times right now. Everyday we come across new information. In Philadelphia, as of right now, all schools, offices, dine in restaurants, cafes, bars, museums, retail stores, theaters, and libraries are closed for atleast two weeks. This timeline is uncertain. As much as we are trying to practice social distancing, I’m sure…

Daal Palak – Saucy Yellow lentils with spinach

Lentils with spinach. Delicious, tangy and earthy flavors combine to make a lip-smacking and healthy dish. This is one of my favorite ways to incorporate spinach in my diet. Its easy to make, the ingredients are always accessible and just SO GOOD! Funny story: Growing up there were only 5 lentil dishes that I would…

Chicken Pepper Masala

Thinking of what to make for dinner is a struggle every night – especially on week nights! Sometimes, the kids’ activities run late and I have just an hour to prepare something that is quick, nutritious and delicious. I always try to plan the menu of the day the night before. I usually take out…

Thai Red Chicken Curry

Do you believe that the warmth of a spicy flavorful curry beats all the odds of winter? I do! When the temperatures are dropping outside and you want something to warm your body and soul before you go into hibernation, a bowl of delicious hot curry is your secret weapon. There are times when you…

Chickpeas curry – Pakistani style!

Chickpeas are such a staple in Pakistani cuisine. They are made into a curry and paired with paratha for a perfect breakfast. Or mixed with tangy chutnies to become your favorite street snack chaat. Or cook it with chicken and you have the famous murgh cholay! And chickpeas rightly deserve this special place in our…

Karahi Daal

Any roadside stall or dhaba in Pakistan will definitely have a non-veg Karahi but it’s vegetarian menu will most probably list Karahi Daal as it’s first dish. This is a dry Chana daal or bengal gram lentil dish made in a spicy tomato base. Garnished with cilantro, ginger and green chillies, this daal is always…

Khaosuey – A delicious Pakistani version of this Burmese dish.

Today really felt like Fall here in Philly with the weather being in the upper 60s. We were shivering in the morning on our way to school dropoff and enjoying the warm afternoon in our cozy sweaters. The sound of the crisp leaves under my boots, and the cold air rustling through my hair made…

Marvel Superheroes Exhibit at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia

If you are anywhere on the East Coast and a big fan of the Marvel Superheroes then this exhibit is one you cannot miss out on! It’s an opportunity to totally immerse yourself in the heroes’ origin tales as well as see over 300 original artifacts including costumes, props (Captain America’s shield is one of…

Spicy Red Kidney Beans curry

It’s currently 1pm here in Horgen, Switzerland and I’m all cozy on my couch and staring out the window at the rain falling down on this beautiful place! The air is filled with a mix of delicious smells. The nostalgic smell of wet earth, the dreamy scent of wisteria and roses, & the appetizing whiff…

I have begun!

‘Tomorrow I will begin’ – Ever so often, these words echo in my head as I close my eyes, ready to drift away after reflecting on my day – especially on what I did not manage to do. There are everyday important things that I do and that are crucial in running my house and caring for my family, but there are those ‘other’ things that seem a bit daunting, too time-consuming, not too important or even sometimes a bit more interesting or fun.

Swiss Muesli

In 2018, my husband got an opportunity to work in Switzerland for four months. His company set him up in an apartment in a beautiful town called Horgen near Zurich. We were lucky that the assignment was during the summer months because as soon as the kids started summer vacation, we all went to spend…

Authentic Philly Cheesesteak with Homemade Cheez Whiz

Gooey, meaty, melty & oh so delicious, a Philly Cheesesteak is the perfect comfort food in its simplicity. If you have ever visited Philadelphia, then chances are you have been told to definitely try a cheesesteak here. In the City of Brotherly Love, cheesesteaks are a cultural icon and a big draw for visitors. Philadelphians…

Kabab in Hara Masala

Kababs. A very big staple in South Asian cuisines. They don’t get as much love as they deserve. Although not as famous as Biryani, they are the constant we can always rely on. Shami Kababs are always hanging out at the back of the freezer ready to be whipped up into a delicious sandwich or…

Leena’s Chicken Fajita Pasta

Summer in times of Corona! We are all living it, fighting it, feeling it and trying to make the best of it. It’s definitely tough. The new school year is looming ahead and me and my husband are thinking of starting home-schooling in addition to whatever the school district proposes. It will be hard but…

Leena’s Egg Salad Recipe

I have found that people have a love/hate relationship with eggs. They either hate them or love them! And then there are people who can’t stand runny yolks or soft boiled eggs and on the other end there are some who can’t eat the whites because it’s tasteless or they can’t tolerate the texture. Which…

Chocolate Soufflé

During my research regarding the impact that African American cuisine has had on culinary history, one name kept cropping up in every article and blog. The name of the legendary and inspiring African American chef and culinary ambassador of Southern cooking – Edna Lewis (1916-2006) Edna Lewis photographed by John T Hill in 1973 I…

Senegalese – inspired Chicken Soup

This past week has been a whirlwind of different emotions. There were moments of extreme sadness and anger at the murder of George Floyd; but also moments of happiness and pride on seeing friends from different walks of life taking action and speaking out against the systemic racism against Black Americans. I couldn’t bear to…

Strawberry & Argula salad with a tangy poppy seed dressing

Say hello to your new favorite summer salad! It’s extremely light, very refreshing, healthy and absolutely delicious. Strawberry is mixed in with Argula, Spinach, Walnuts, Almonds, Blue berries and Feta cheese. My mouth is already watering… so delicious! I pair it with an easy Poppy seed dressing that will leave your tastebuds screaming yum at…