Arhama Siddiqa

Arhama Siddiqa

The author is a LUMS and University of Warwick Alumnus and is currently a Research Fellow at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI). She calls herself a bibliophile,a dreamer and an avid foodie.

To all my ‘berry’ special someones, these recipes are for you

I shall start off by highlighting the importance of the strawberry emoticon in my life. For me, hearts are over-rated. So if I have ever used a strawberry on someone – even once – it must mean they have some special significance in my life. I know it’s cheesy, but I’m possessive when it comes to using this particular emoticon.   Now when rairi wala (fruit cart) stands are laden with bright red fruit, you know the season for the king of berries has arrived! Strawberries are by far my favourite fruit. I could eat them all day long and there are so so so (I cannot put enough emphasis ...

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This Valentine’s Day, single or taken, try out these tasty treats

Valentine’s Day is back again. Shops and restaurants are all decked in red. Street vendors with heart-shaped balloons and red roses can be seen in every nook and cranny. It is my personal belief that this day does not have to be about couples alone as it has mostly been made out to be. All the single people out there do not have to go underground for the day. It can be an ideal way to spend a non-public holiday with your family and friends. I will take this opportunity to admit I am not big on celebrating all the love ...

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This food street inspired white chicken karhai will leave those desi taste buds drooling for more

As we know, Lahore is well known for its gastronomic treats, and is considered one of the culinary titans of Pakistan. I recently had the chance to visit the city and the famous food street. Upon entering the street, my mouth automatically started watering. The atmosphere was thick with steam, oil, and smoke from the countless karhais loaded with chicken and marinated kebabs on the charcoal grills. Watching the chef add green chillies to the wok was nothing short of torture. But it was one well worth waiting for. As soon as the dish was placed in front of me, I jumped at it. It was ...

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Monkey bread: A bundt pan of heaven!

Have you ever had monkey bread before? You will fall into one of the following two categories: 1. Those that have eaten it and love it. 2. Those that have no clue what it is and probably think it involves monkeys (I did too). If you fall into the latter category, let me try to explain what this amazing-ness is. Monkey bread is akin to a giant cinnamon roll, only it’s a whole bunch of little rolls clustered together. Sweet, sticky, gooey pastry in the form of little balls of dough rolled in cinnamon sugar and baked together in a bundt pan. You can ...

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For the love of pizza (and your tummy)

Just about everyone loves pizza. If you’re a pizza lover, chances are the phrase “too much” seldom crosses your lips, and you can but taste a world of cheesy, saucy goodness waiting to tickle your taste buds. The classic American pizza pie consists of a flat, open–faced round of bread–type dough topped with tomato sauce and cheese and any number of different toppings. Still there is a lot more to say about pizza than, “Make mine a large with mozzarella, mushrooms, and pepperoni.” Pizza comes in many forms too – that just increases its awesomeness tenfold! So you get the ...

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This winter, cuddle under the blanket with a warm slice of this carrot cake

The temperatures are falling. It is getting colder by the day – the perfect weather to enjoy several mugs of coffee, cuddled under a cosy throw blanket by the window while enjoying a good book. For me winters would be incomplete without carrot cake. I am all for cooking healthy food, but some of the best desserts combine a bit from both worlds. Now, I’m not claiming that carrot cake is healthy. But it can’t be bad with all those good ingredients in it, right? The great thing about this cake (apart from it being extremely delicious) is how easy it ...

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While jingle bells are ringing, devour this scrumptious Christmas meal with your loved ones

The festive season is entering its prime the world-over; a time when it is easy to overindulge and get out of your fitness routine. Plus, whether you are catering for herds of family members or serving up an intimate spread, preparing food during these times can be super stressful. And so, it’s better to be equipped with easy, tried-and-tested recipes since a state of blind panic can quickly ensue in case things go wrong when cooking for a gathering! Plus, it is winters and the weather demands something warm and filling. Quick, easy and filling, this is my go-to three course meal ...

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A Rage for Order: Painting a crucial portrait of the deeply troubled Arab uprising

Revolutions never seem to bring the happiness they promise. There was no happy conclusion in France in 1789 or Russia in 1917 and neither in Egypt or Libya or Syria in 2011. Instead, if anything, the Middle East has gone from bad – brutal dictatorships built on secret police and theft – to worse; open civil war and genocide. The year 2011 saw a revolution escalate through the Middle East as protesters demanded an end to tyranny, corruption and economic decay. From Egypt to Yemen, a generation of young Arabs insisted on a new culture of common nationality. Five years later, their utopian goals have taken on a darker ...

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Cheesecake FTW!

Given the choice between a cheesecake and a myriad of other desserts, I would choose cheesecake every day and maybe even twice on Sunday. It is one of my great loves. Before the dawn of places like The Cheesecake Factory and more cheesecake concoctions than days in a month, there was just… cheesecake. Having said that, it’s a multitude of everything you could ask for in a dessert: it’s creamy, tangy and melt-in-your-mouth fantastic. There are two versions – baked and non-baked. Here I’ll be going for the former. I got this easy recipe from a flatmate at Warwick. Ordinarily, I don’t go for a topping because ...

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This winter, let’s get fishy!

I’ve always been fond of seafood. Whether you’re a diehard pescatarian or just a seafood lover, you’re probably in need of some fresh ideas – which is why I thought I’d share one of my favourite recipes; a quick fix that will hopefully inspire you to incorporate more seafood into your meals considering it’s a very important part of a healthy diet. Speaking of seafood, did you know that October is national seafood month this time around in the United States? So why not celebrate something in the name of the One World One Ocean campaign*? Plus this recipe is a winner! It’s so simple, does not require any lengthy marinating ...

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