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Capturing Ramadan in Photos

Photographing Ramadan traditions around the world is a genius idea- what a way to educate, inform and inspire. I’m so glad much of it was captured through a competition called ‘Capture the Spirit of Ramadan’. Have you seen? 

The International Ramadan Competition It took us on journeys to far away places where we could view amazing images of Ramadan traditions and Islamic culture around the world.  

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Mediterranean Lentil Soup

Lentil soup is one of my all-time favorite soups. I can’t believe I waited until the end of Ramadan to finally make a huge pot, but it’ll keep us nice and happy for the last few days of it, insha’allah. Check out the giveaway at the end for a chance to get some of the same wholesome ingredients found in this recipe.

Warm lentil soup is so perfect for Iftar 

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Slow Cooker Haleem

I’ve been told for years that haleem, the puréed meat and grains dish with South Asian flavors,  is a favorite Iftar dish for so many Muslims observing the Ramadan fast.  Though not a common way of eating meat American-style, (cooked down for hours and combined with grains all puréed together) if you pre-judge it and dismiss it, you may never really experience the potentially satisfying eating experience it offers. It’s also quite nourishing.

final haleem bowl

My version of mildy-spiced haleem 

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The Story Behind Patchi Chocolates

Last year during Ramadan I introduced you to Patchi chocolates because I fell in love with their quality and taste. I had all but given up on ever finding the taste of real chocolate mixed with real nuts like hazelnuts, pistachio, and almonds that I grew up enjoying whenever someone in my family came to visit from Italy bearing gifts of chocolate con nocciole (chocolate and hazelnut). I could only ever recapture those tastes when I traveled back to Italy, and it’s been a long time since.

Ramadan

Patchi Chocolate and Nougat Gift Box Giveaway Item

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Chicken Caesar Salad with Homemade Buttermilk Dressing

Potluck parties are nice, but just the word ‘potluck’ is a bit unappealing to some people who say that the idea of hoping to be ‘lucky’ about what ends up at a dinner where everyone brings a dish is more risk than they’d like to take with regards to their food. Jokes abound about this concept of communal eating, but no doubt it’s a common way of gathering and eating and can be a great way to experience variety, whether the party is big or small.

Cuban Sandwiches and a Table Spread at a Small Cuban-Inspired Iftar Dinner

When I was a college student (won’t say how long ago that was), I enjoyed potluck parties so much because it was a great way for everyone to have home-cooked meals from a small apartment dining room table that looked like a beautiful international buffet. My university had a large international student population, some of whom became good friends, so I was able to try things that I don’t even have the opportunity to eat now: South American specialties from places like Columbia, Peru, and Ecuador; Middle Eastern specialties from small villages, Malaysian curries, Indonesian satays, Indian sweets and so much more.

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Homemade Chappati

I’ve been really blessed to meet so many amazing people since I started this blog. People are happy to share their cooking ideas and recipes all the time and more often than ever does the topic of conversation with complete strangers, new and old friends and my family turn to healthy food, ethnic cuisine and just getting back to basics when it comes to bringing everyone around the table for a meal to remember.

I was invited to the home of a Pakistani family who lives in the Chicago suburbs so that I could learn and share with you how to make homemade roti, or bread, also known as chappati.  Chappati is an unleavened flat bread that is dry cooked over flame and not stuffed or layered with ghee (clarified butter) like the another popular Indian-style flat bread called paratha.

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Dates & Cream Iftar

Ramadan Mubarak! Muslims all over the world are embarking on another blessed month of fasting from food and drink (pre-dawn to sunset) in order to re-focus on what is spiritually important in their lives. Although they’ll  be breaking the fast in different ways around the world, according to their own particular and culturally desirable tastebuds, one food that … Read more

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