My Niece’s Circus Themed Birthday Party (turning one)

I wrote an entire post about my niece, Eleanor, who a few days ago just turned one, and then I deleted it. I was beginning to philosophize the theory of ‘building memories’ with children, and I went on and on about the idea of how children change us for the better, at least temporarily, until…

Fluffy Pancakes (Healthier, too)

Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves, We have had our summer evenings, now for [September] eves! – Humbert Wolfe Fluffy & Delicious Pancake Recipe Total time: 10 minutes (for a healthier option, check ‘Lessons Learned’ under) Ingredients 1½ cups all-purpose flour 3½ tsps baking powder ½ tsp salt ¼…

Cookie recipe for one

I cannot fathom a deep and comprehensible post at 11:37 pm when I am over and under the moon having just discovered this quick one-cookie recipe. I have been searching for a dessert recipe for ONE person, mostly to avoid over-eating, over-compensating, and to satisfy my late-night sweet-tooth regrettable cravings. Sadly, everything required a heating temperature…

Baked Maple Donuts

I made these last night as I prepared for my final viewing of the Rio summer Olympic Games with a heavy heart. I’ve dedicated an entire blog post to the Olympics, so I will just leave one final comment before I pin down the recipe for these great Maple donuts .. The Olympic games offer us an…

How the Olympic Games inspired my uphill battle

I faintly remember my gym class in the country that I was born in, Lebanon, where excruciating heat was coupled with wool gym track suits that we called uniform. My gym teacher was about 60 pounds overweight, tall with short dark hair, and a remarkable permanent grim. Drinking water was forbidden for that brutal hour…

Henry James & The Portrait of a Great Trifle

In many cases, the characters in the books that I read, in certain circumstances and in-between great dialogue, resonate among all things with me. Take Isabel Archer as a great example: a young lady who found herself intertwined in high society through a family member whom  offered her a chance of great reference for travel and riveting characters…

Fresh Pasta

Making fresh pasta for the very first time could make any amateur cook feel as though the opened gates to experienced cookery have respectfully allowed them in. It was a great experience making fresh pasta for the very first time, one that I reckon I might recall years to come as my mother’s face of delight and…

‘Heavenly’ Angel Cake with Caramelized Strawberry

“Green was the silence, wet was the light, the month of June trembled like a butterfly.” ― Pablo Neruda, June, welcome. The intensity of green, blue, pink, purple, and red, visible in the flowers of my mother’s backyard, delight that voice inside me that whispers ‘ah’ while I am having my morning coffee, and reading…

Three years today; celebrating with a classic!

I received a little notification from WordPress wishing my blog a happy anniversary. Today would mark its three year anniversary; meaning, I began my masters degree three summers ago, ending with my convocation coming up next Friday. WOW!  I’m truly amazed. This has been the most enjoyable experience for me. Cooking, baking, blogging, and finishing my masters…

Dates & Banana Oats Bar

I once made my fiancé a dates and oats bar recipe that he absolutely loved. I mean, he truly loved it. I remember as I was mixing the ingredients, I would eat bits and pieces before even baking it, absolutely blown away by how delicious the recipe was. Sadly, I never saved the recipe. And ever…

Post-workout Asian-Inspired Salad

I have been determined to drop those last (very stubborn) 15 pounds. So, I have been sticking to a very serious workout regime (cardio, HIIT training, weights, and..my favourite yet, boxing). For someone who loves to workout, sticking to a regime wasn’t such a challenge. But, doing it six times a week is! What I did…

A Delicious Greek Lunch

I came home from teaching, and as my routine dictates, I often make a healthy lunch that lasts me for the next two days (…that is if I didn’t chug it down all at once:D). I didn’t overthink this- one click to Pinterest and I was all Greek inspired. I love greek food- I also think…

Fondant Vanilla Cake

After working with fondant for the first time and having the experience turn out great (previous post: sweetest birthday cake) – I am now arrogant. Somehow I now think that I can make ANY cake with fondant :s …and the truth is, well, my arrogance has not been completely shattered just yet (but continue reading: I will…

Bread Cones

Once I saw this on Pinterest, I immediately pre-heated my oven. I love creative recipes…and bread. So, it was no surprise I had to try it! What I love most about this recipe (besides the arts & craft that goes into making the cones) is that it is quite simple, and yet simply delicious. This recipe can…

Roast Chicken

I’ve finished my research paper!!! It feels liberating, refreshing, and quite scary all at the same time. I’ve immensely enjoyed my research experience, though it undoubtedly came with a few bumps (as naturally any vigorous thesis-writing experience entails) you’re always an amateur right until after you’ve finished and submitted a 130 page research. Key word: after. You never…

Home-made Gnocchi & Tomato Sauce

Gnocchi Recipe Recipe taken from: http://aseasyasapplepie.com/how-to-make-gnocchi/ Total time: 35 min Ingredients 1 kg (2.2 pounds) russet or desiree potatoes 3 cups minus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour Pasta sauce (tomato, pesto, rose, etc.) Semolina flour to dust the trays/baking sheets Process Wash the potatoes (don’t peel them!) and place them in a saucepan. Cover with cold water…

Butter Rose Cookies

I found this recipe last night while I was taking a break from my research paper and randomly filtering through Pinterest’s baking posts (which could be really addicting): I came across these beautiful rose cookies. After I made them, I was blown away by how easy the process was, yielding such delicious (buttery, crumbly, tasty) cookies. I…

Oat & Honey Bread (one of the best, really!)

I went grocery shopping yesterday to get ready for a fresh new start at work (I’ve returned to teaching), and fresh new eating habit (that is)- the holiday baking exterminated my waist line. But, I forgot to buy bread! I love buying fresh baked bread, and the ‘healthier’ selection that’s out there compared to a…

Sweetest Birthday Cake

Today is my finance’s birthday, and this is the first time I make a fondant-covered cake! I do believe in the corny saying of, “cooking requires love”. It’s often things I make from love that yield me the best results. I didn’t overthink the process of working with fondant, I was enjoying my time of…

New Year Fortune Cookies

Happy New Year! 2015 has been a wonderful year, just like the one (s) before it. I constantly pray, so on this one night I don’t make resolutions to break or keep. I trust my fate is best dealt with in God’s hand. But, if I were to make one resolution, I pray that God grants…

Pinwheel Chocolate and Vanilla Cookies

I must have written this a while back, and I just came across it now. Plato once famously said: “At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet”. A poet or not, I am content with the thought that only I know what I meant when I wrote this then. I heard stories of plenty smiles. Of…

Croquembouche Cone

This morning was a beautiful morning. It’s incredibly frightening to experience 8 degree weather on December 25th, but with that in mind, I could not pass up the crisp, yet warm breeze I received from a very transparent sun. I opened my bedroom door that faced my backyard, and I pulled up a chair with a coffee in…

Holiday Cookies

I am in a very serious stage with my research paper with submission date closely creeping around the corner. But I am enjoying every bit of this process, and all its forms of self-doubt. It’s somehow liberating, really.:) Once I grabbed hold of a solid routine, I began using my breaks for things that I enjoyed doing (like…

Delicious Vegan Chocolate Cake (from a non-vegan)

It is my 7th day on the vegan diet challenge and I absolutely love it (now). At first I was experiencing some light headaches and minor irritabilities, though I’ve previously kept a lean and clean eating schedule– but with the drastic changes of cutting meat and diary out, I feel lighter, healthier, and I find…

14-day Vegan Diet Challenge

Oscar Wilde once said, “Everything popular is wrong”—which is perhaps ironic for a man whose words graced the covers of an adequate amount of greeting cards, or even the bio description of many social media wits.  But perhaps his declaration is mainly due to his overlooked legacy after his six famous publications in the late…

Middle Eastern Butter Cookies with Dates and Pistachio

I really love this season. Not only do I get an incredible sense of comfort from chilly weather and warm feet, but it’s cozy in my kitchen when the fire is on, and the house smells like sugar cookies. Baking for my fiancé is probably one of my favourite things to do in the world; and…

Delicious Lemon Loaf (maybe as good as Starbucks)

I’ve been thinking of going back to writing lately (professionally). I used to be a freelance writer, and I published a couple of articles here and there, and wrote for the university’s newspaper while I was doing my undergrad. I remember the rush. The deadlines. The spontaneous creativity. The endless writer’s block, and the extreme…

English Tea Scones

I remember being in one of my undergrad courses, second or third year, carrying around with me The Happiness Project. I distinctively remember being early for one of my politics course as I did my minor in Political Science, holding on to every line of this bright blue and yellow book. I must have been…

Homemade ‘gourmet’ Chocolate: Caramel + Macadamia

I made these caramel and macadamia filled chocolates for my fiancé (9 months engaged, going on 5 years together). I was tempted to insert rows and rows of poetry in front of the word ‘fiancé’ because somehow just labeling him as my fiancé and moving on seems absolutely unjust to the type of man he is. But, what is concealed…

Pineapple Avocado Salad

When it comes to writing articles, I always wait for the moment where I am incredibly genuine about my words—and sometimes that takes a while, a long while, as I dislike the idea of overthinking—again, my philosophy of innate writers is a clear indication of my writing struggle (or motto). But when the idea does…

A Flower Cheese Pie

I know I keep disappearing. And like always, upon my return, I confess my admiration for blogging. I haven’t been teaching (Academic English to International Students) lately, as the semester was put on hold, and all I could think of is how much I want to write. You see, when I was teaching full-time, I would make…

My 50th Blog Post: High ‘tea’ sandwiches to celebrate

I wish I knew prior to making these sandwiches how delicious they would turn out …and perhaps, just perhaps, that would have persuaded me from eating the entirety of this display picture in a day and a half I have been slightly busy lately with preparing my thesis and teaching in the mornings. I thought I would…

A ‘Dates Cake’ recipe that is like no other!

My (future) sister-in-law gave me this recipe the other day and I just couldn’t wait to try it. But I knew that would be a little difficult considering the fact that my oven is currently not working. So, a little problem, right? A thought outside of the box wouldn’t hurt. I have decided to put…

Moroccan Cauliflower Couscous with Lamb and Yogurt Sauce

I LOVE watching cooking shows and food documentaries. I am currently watching Masterchef Australia (when Masterchef Canada isn’t on). I love this competitive show because I learn so many cooking techniques from it, and I get inspired to try some of the recipes. I actually did not know that you can make cauliflower that tastes and looks…

Shrimp Dumpling

Aside from my having culinary inspirations and being an avid food documentary viewer, I am a full-time language instructor with a thesis paper to write for my masters. I think that part of my daily food inspirations definitely come from my students who come from various linguistic and cultural/ethnic backgrounds. I have to admit that, having…

Home-made Sushi!!

Yes, I made sushi. Finally. I’ve been hesitant of making sushi for a while now because I always hear mixed stories about it. Some say it’s simple and some say that the rice is complicated to make. However, I decided to go for it last night! And? well? IT WAS AMAZING! I promised myself that…

No-Bake, Non-fat, Super Addictive Cheesecake

THIS CHEESECAKE RECIPE WAS HEAVENLY. I am so extremely excited that I have found a super delicious non-fat cheesecake recipe. I LOVE that this recipe was super easy to make, and was gone (entire plate empty) within a few hours. A FEW HOURS. Insanely good. Time to make: 10 minutes, then 30-40 minutes to chill…

Authentic Indian Samosas (but with a healthy twist)

I love Indian food! My fiancé and I order Indian food all the time (OK, not all the time :))- but whenever we do order Indian food (especially from descent Indian restaurants), it’s usually a heightened, enjoyable experience. I am not sure why ordering food with a loved one is a heightened enjoyable experience, but it just…

Spinach ‘Asian-inspired’ Salad with Marinated Chicken

I initially began this blog as a way to digitally store great recipes to revisit them in the future and recreate them- sort of like having a recipe book, but online. So I like to blog sometimes about the complex recipes I attempt, and also about the super, super easy ones that are a no-brainer. But…

The Philosophy of Cheese- My quest for discovery.

I have always fancied the idea of sampling cheese. In fact, I often wonder if such courses exist (without the initial purpose of wine being the driven factor). I would love nothing more than to understand the philosophy of cheese and to be well informed about the different types, tastes, age, and the sweet and savoury…