‘I Love India’ by Anjum Anand

Introduction I believe that each of us is the sum of all our parts. I know that everything I have done and experienced in life has brought me to this place in my career and, looking back, I see how all the dots join up. In my case, these indelible markers started before I did….

Sweet Middle East: Anissa Helou

I have a strong sweet tooth and often say it’s because my family name, Helou, means “sweet” in Arabic. In truth, that has nothing to do with it. Most people in the Middle East and North Africa have a serious penchant for all things sugary. Sweets occupy an important place in our lives, and every…

In Search of the Perfect Curry: Chef Rick Stein

Whenever I hear the word ‘curry’, I’m filled with a longing for spicy hot food with the fragrance of cumin, cloves and cinnamon. I see deep-red colors from lots of Kashmiri chillies tinged with a suggestion of yellow from turmeric. I think of the tandoor oven, and slightly scorched naan shining with ghee and garlic;…

Sadia Dehlvi’s Delhi in “Jasmine & Jinns” is Delightful and Inviting

The title of Sadia Dehlvi’s latest book ‘Jasmine and Jinns’, brings to mind images from fantasies like Tilism-e-Hoshruba and Alif-Laila. And why not! Within its 200+ pages, Sadia Dehlvi reminisces about her childhood, punctiliously preserved in photographs and mostly recollections of people, of whom only some remain. She introduces characters like Apa Saeeda, Amma, Mamoo…

Bookmark this!

In 2015, I had done a series where I illustrated new year resolutions for people. While most of them remained more or less similar, what I know for sure is, that for most of us, the same lists still apply and we seem to still be struggling. Take a look at the list above and…

Muslim Cookery- Fish: Meen Porichathu, Machchi Memoni

Machchi Memoni | Memoni Barbecued Fish Ingredients: 500 gms any round fish like seer ½ lime 1 ½ tsp salt ½ cup yogurt 4 tbsp oil Spice paste 1 small onion 4 garlic cloves 4 whole dried red chillies 1 tsp red Kashmiri chilli powder ¼ tsp turmeric powder 1 tbsp cashew nuts, coarsely crushed…

Foods of India – Kutchi Memon Cuisine

Introduction While the fare on Cutchi (Kutchi) Memon tables is legendary, it is a little known fact that these recipes are considered sacred and guarded zealously by the owners of the keys to paradise. Those who do not qualify by bloodline have often received the recipe for sheekh kabab without the ingredient that encourages the…

Lebanese street corner bakeries

The manóushé is the quintessential Lebanese breakfast. Named for the Arabic word na’sh which refers to the way the fingertips of the baker “engrave” the dough, the manóushé is indeed engraved upon our collective memories as Lebanese. The smell of manóushé bi-zatar in the morning catapults a Lebanese person back in time to a lively…

Recipes from the Middle East & beyond

Broad Beans with Garlic, Dill & Eggs – Baghala Ghatogh (Serves 4 as part of a Mezze) Ingredients: Olive oil 1 garlic bulb, cloves bashed and thinly sliced 1 kg (2 lb 4oz) podded fresh or frozen broad beans, skins removed 3 tsp turmeric Generous tsp sea salt flakes Freshly ground black pepper 3 x 20g…

Bread and Salt

Bread, called nan in Persian, is the staple food of Iran in all regions except around the Caspian, where rice supplants it. Nan is a Persian word first used in Achaemenid Iran (550-330 BCE), from which all other languages borrowed it. In Iran, bread and salt are treated with great respect. The main Persian breads are flat breads but…

Persian Tea

Tea was discovered about 5000 years ago in China. In the early 17th century, tea was introduced to England and its Chinese name, tay, changed to the English name tea. In England, tea was brewed in china teapots. The English believed that a drop of milk in the teapot would prevent it from breaking and thus…

Armenian Sweet Bread (Nan-e gisu)

Makes 3 loaves Preparation time: 20 minutes plus rising time overnight Cooking time: 35-40 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 package or 1 tablespoon dry yeast 1/4th cup warm water 3 eggs 1.5 cups sugar 1 tablespoon honey 2 tsp ground mahlab 1 cup whole milk 1 cup melted, unsalted butter or Oil 4.5-5.5 cups cake flour, sifted with…