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Herbivoracious by Michael Natkin | My Halal Kitchen

CLOSED: Michael Natkin and the Herbivoracious Cookbook Giveaway

Several months ago I attended the Eat Write Retreat event for food writers and bloggers, which took place in Washington, D.C. It was a weekend filled with discussions and a chance to meet some very interesting people in the food industry.  Cookbook author Michael Natkin was one of those people. He talked about the process of writing Herbivoracious, an incredibly vibrant cookbook full of interesting and ethnically-diverse vegetarian recipes that are simple to make but uniquely set apart from any other vegetarian cookbook I’d seen before.

I read the book cover to cover and became so inspired to cook more vegetarian meals than ever before. I also knew that I had a ton of questions about how Michael came to write this book since I found his recipes to be globally-inspired and have several that feature super healthy recipes from Middle Eastern cuisine

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How to Preserve Fresh Parsley | My Halal Kitchen

How to Preserve Fresh Summer Parsley

It’s always been intriguing to me that despite how often our weather fluctuates, many of my summer herbs seem to shake off the temporary freezes and just keep on going for weeks into the fall. Some years I’ve experimented to find out how long they would last in certain temperatures; other years I wait to see if they’ll actually go to seed so I can collect them and plant in the next spring, experimenting with their viability.

My later summer garden herbs

Safe to say, however, that when the cold remains for days at a time, it’s the moment to salvage what you have left of certain herbs before they turn bitter, or worse yet, die.

This is the best way I’ve found to preserve fresh parsley. My aunt taught this preservation method to me and made me watch her carefully so that I didn’t miss a step, insisting that if I did it the right way, I could have wonderful parsley all winter long to use in soups, stews, and more.

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Caprese Salad with Parsley

Caprese Salad is a somewhat Italian-American dish since it has increased so much in popularity in recent years. More and more people know what fresh mozzarella looks like and even prefer the boccancini, or the small fresh mozzarella balls, to processed and tasteless shredded ‘mozzarella’ cheese.

I grew up on variations of Insalata Caprese. Caprese means of the isle of Capri, which is located off the western coast of Southern Italy. I’ve not been there yet, but I’ve been close by having traveled all along the Amalfi Coast through the towns of Positano, Sorrento and Amalfi. They are some of the most breathtakingly beautiful places I’ve ever been and it still feels like somewhat of a dream that I’ve ever been there at all. It truly is the stuff of magazines. In fact, I followed a magazine article all the way to the town square and found the exact same vendors from the snapshot right there in the town of Positano. They were so excited about the clip that they wanted pictures of themelves holding it up. Through my broken Italian and being la Americana, they mistook me for a news reporter from New York rather than the curious college student wanting to explore la bella vita in Italia that I was.

I need to find that photo.

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How to Preserve Fresh Basil

It’s that time of year here in the Midwest of the U.S. and everywhere there is summer weather when our gardens are bursting with green and lovely plants and herbs. Since we’ve had a lot of hot weather lately, my basil, tomato and zucchini plants have suddenly bolted upward. That’s great for vegetable plants, but … Read more

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