Stories about ingredients

Cauliflower pizza: It may be peculiar but will be your new favourite

  My original recipe of this nutrient-rich, grain and gluten-free pizza is made from cauliflower instead of flour. Trust me, this recipe is surprisingly delicious. It is a healthy vegetarian recipe not involving bread dough and can be made with any favourite sauce and toppings. This makes for a healthy nutritious meal that we can enjoy with family and friends. Using vegetables has been a growing trend when it comes to people wanting to maintain a healthy life style. It is the best part of a balanced diet, as well as brings transformation to our entrenched ways of cooking and dining. However, cooking vegetables in ...

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Palak chicken: A true Pakistani delight

Palak gosht was cooked very frequently in my mother’s household during the winter season and for some reason, I never liked what meat did to the spinach. While living in London, I once had Palak chicken at one of the Pakistani restaurants and loved it. Later, I tried my own version at home and have not looked back ever since. My brother, O, who was studying at the University of Warwick during that time, became the guinea pig for my cooking experiments. My palak chicken didn’t just get approved by him, but I was also requested to make some for him to take along to ...

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Do you know what ingredients are used in locally made fairness creams?

On numerous occasions in the past, heavy fines have been imposed on Johnson & Johnson and other prominent pharmaceutical companies for various offences such as false labelling, poor manufacturing practices, Medicare fraud, and kickbacks. This was possible because consumer protection laws are strongly implemented around the world. Unfortunately, here, in Pakistan, we have no such laws; everyone is manufacturing and selling products without the risk of facing any trouble. It’s in our society that edible items and medical products are manufactured without any respect for the consumers’ health. Let’s look at how these businesses exploit people. Our society denies proper education or vocational training to girls, particularly those ...

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Do you have what it takes to resist this chocolate caramel tart? Because I don’t!

I’ve always wanted to make a chocolate tart, but honestly, I had been scared of making the pastry required for the base. I’m not sure why, but making pastry seemed difficult. The time required, the kneading, the rolling, the making sure it’s perfect to cook (and also the dried beans/pie weights needed?! What!) I tend to not have the time or the patience, and recipes with lots of steps scare me. But I am a determined woman. After years of wanting to make a chocolate tart, but never actually doing so – it was finally time. I had invited some ...

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My massive love affair with these mini quiches

When I was hosting some friends over for an afternoon tea, I had already thought of having scones and a chocolate tart. I needed one more dish! Growing up, it was always important to make sure that there was enough food to feed all your guests and more; always more, than less. Since it wasn’t a lunch or dinner, I wanted to have little bits that people could pick on while hanging out. Dips, chips and all of that is the easy part. I needed something else that I could make over the weekend and freeze easily since I would have had to make ...

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Wagon-wheel pasta: A little taste of Tuscany on your Pakistani plate

So if you are amongst 95% of the people of the world, you are probably intimidated by cooking. So was I, once upon a time. To look at a well-cooked dish was like looking at the great pyramids; fascinating and intriguing, but a mystery as to how it was built. But watching Nigella Lawson cook, who made it look like a piece of cake, inspired me to start cooking. And to avoid any complications, I started developing my own simple recipes. And if I can cook, trust me, so can you. Unless you have a cooking-phobia and faint upon stepping into ...

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An ‘Hummazing’ way to eat right in Ramazan

Chop the veggies, whip up gram flour with seasoning, make a paste with water, dip the veggies and fry! Fasting and pakoras are insanely intertwined. Roadside vendors, kiosks, and general stores – all have flaming hot oil pans, centered neatly on busy roads, frying away these crunchy, deep mustard, vegetable fritter devils. Admittedly, they are best eaten after a hot day of fasting, right after gobbling up a mushy sweet date and right before sipping a deep red cold drink. The scrunch, the spice and the saltiness are all addictive. But I protest against this addiction. And this alluded me to think ...

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Summer mocktails and a juicy Ramazan

The blazing heat of the June sun is slowly giving way to the sweltering, scorching July summer wave, as always. However, this year, July is host to the holy month of Ramazan as well. Along with the piety and prayers, Ramazan heralds the beginning of sumptuous iftars and sleepy sehris. But this time, there will be an added twist. With the power supply playing its agonising game of hide and seek, looming visions of extremely thirsty summer afternoons coming ahead have taken over our minds. Reprieve from this can come only in the form of cooling, sweat-beating summer drinks that are easy to prepare but ...

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Broccoli cheese cups: Looks like a cupcake, tastes divine and the kids love it too!

“I know you’re 37…” beamed my daughters’ (very suave) teacher when I went to her school the other day.  At a recent blood donation camp at my daughters’ school, all the students were briefed on the importance of donating blood, who all can and should donate. When told that the minimum age for donating blood was 18, my seven-year-old very confidently volunteered, “Oh my mother can donate blood (perhaps twice) she is 37”. At home, she insisted her dad volunteers too, since it was taken for granted that Mum would be going. However, when she saw blood draining (pun intended) from her father’s ...

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The quickest and most delicious Nutella Mousse you’ll ever make!

I recently filled up ‘Homemaker’ in a form which had a field called ‘Occupation’. And soon after I was asked, “So what else do you do apart from staying at home and ensuring nutritious meals for your children?” To which I replied, “Actually nothing, just trying to do a PhD in Domestic Staff Management (and failing miserably). I also have a diploma in ‘Hair Management’ where we were taught how not to pull your hair if the ‘feeder’ blows up or internet connections fail to work or Sui Gas connections were blown up in Balochistan. During my break time, I go from one ...

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