I could never imagine my kitchen without spices, fresh or dried and love using them with cooking and baking. Advieh is a Persian spice mix for rice dishes and an aromatic blend that’s sweet and warming, a little earthy and a touch romantic. Using dried rose petals, cinnamon, cardamom and cumin, this advieh recipe is from a friends Persian cookbook, New Food of Life by Najmieh Batmanglij. Continue reading
Versatile and convenient, couscous is a handy staple to have in your store cupboard. When soaked in boiling water, it only takes minutes to prepare. Couscous tastes bland and is perfect for taking on other flavors. There’s room for plenty of seasonings, stock, fresh herbs, spices and additions like nuts, dried and fresh fruits and vegetables. Continue reading
Living on an island of date palms, and having date palms in our garden, an almost endless supply of these sweet delicious morsels of fruit are available from one season to the next. In its simplest form dates are delicious just as they are, but quite heavenly when paired with different flavours and ingredients such as vanilla, citrus, chocolate, dairy products, nuts and certain spices. This super easy desert with dates and bananas soaked in fresh cream is not overly sweet, but enough to satisfy that sweet craving after a meal.
Nutmeg adds an aromatic sweetness and another dimension of flavour to this dessert and is best when freshly grated. I keep whole nutmeg stored in a special nutmeg mill and freshly grind when required. This desserts is best made two to three hours before serving, the flavours need to develop and the dates soak up some of the cream. The bananas do not discolor during this time, so no need to add any lemon juice. Use bananas that are firm with no brown spots on their skins. Fresh and dried dates can be used for this dessert but choose soft plump dates when buying dried ones. Continue reading