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Tandoori Spiced Chicken Pizza

Two of my favorite things and my favorite flavors combined to make this recipe we’ve been enjoying a lot this Ramadan– pizza and Tandoori Chicken. To make it super quick and serve as an appetizer at Iftar, I cut the finished pizza into squares. We love to have it just after breaking our fast with … Read more

Beef Samosa Puff Pastries

If you’ve never tasted keema, or that wonderfully spiced Indian-style ground beef, you’re totally missing out on some great flavor. Surely every family makes it a little different- even I have a few different versions, but for samosas I like to recreate a certain flavor. The first time I ever had it was at a … Read more

snack mix, party mix, nut mix,

Savory Party Snack Mix

Party season is well underway, whether you get into it or not. People are off work and ready to gather with family and friends to enjoy some great food. And almost everyone laments eating all that rich food and all those amazing cookies and other sweets that seem to find their way on your plate– even if that plate is the last thing you take home at night after visits.

party mix in individual cups

I am personally not fond of too many snack foods because I don’t like to fill up before meals, but nibbling on something healthy and tasty is something I enjoy because it doesn’t ruin my appetite for other great food to come. 

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Healthy Snacking Ideas | My Halal Kitchen

Healthy Snacking

With kids back to school and everyone seeming to be on more of a straightforward schedule, it also seems to make mealtime more structured, though perhaps there’s less time to get full meals on the table in between homework and sports schedules. I don’t have kids, but juggle a hectic work schedule and I’m the only one cooking {most of the time}.

savories up close

Sometimes in the middle of the day or even just before dinner when my husband comes home, I like to have something to nibble on while I can still cook a quick and healthy meal without being completely rushed for time. I’m picky about snacks, though. I like them to be healthy, but no processed and although I know that fruits are great, I actually prefer them after dinner, sort of as dessert (pulling back into my Sicilian roots and way of eating).  

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Lemon Ricotta Dip

For some reason, during Ramadan I tend to see, make, eat and enjoy appetizers the most. It’s nice to have something light but substantial at the initial breaking of the fast, but it’s more than that for me. Maybe it’s because when the fast-breaking time comes every evening, it’s one of the sweetest moments I experience (whether the appetizer is sweet or savory). I love biting into something I can hear crunch, maybe because it then actually feels like the sound of food. I’m not sure what it is, but I enjoy it.

inside sweet phyllo

Dates, Tamarind & Walnut phyllo appetizers

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Cilantro & Mint Dipping Sauce

While Ramadan could begin tonight, I am beginning to think about one of my favorite times of the month- the breaking of the first fast. What will we have to savor the moment when the sun sets and it’s time to enjoy something sweet, a date perhaps, and then something quick yet savory before it’s time for the maghreb (sunset) prayer?

cilantro and mint yogurt sauce

Cilantro & Mint Dipping Sauce with Saffron Road’s new savory phyllo hors d’oeuvres

I love crunchy appetizers, but I’m not fond of deep fried foods, particularly after a long day of fasting. I love baked things and I particularly love anything wrapped in flaky phyllo dough, so Saffron Road’s new savory appetizersCrispy Samosas with Saag Paneerand Crispy Samosas with Vegetables will be on our Iftar table with my homemade Cilantro & Mint Dipping Sauce. Its creamy yogurt-base is stretchable- if you want more, just add more yogurt; if you want it thicker, use less yogurt to begin with.

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Black Bean Dip | My Halal Kitchen

Five Layer Black Bean Dip + Homemade Tortilla Chip Recipes

This morning I had the great honor of being able to show young junior high students at a local school how to prepare a fun and healthy after-school snack that they can prepare for themselves without ever having to turn on a stove.

gorgeous bean dip trays at MCWS
This demo was conducted in conjunction with IFANCA‘s initiative to talk to kids about what’s halal in commercial food products as well as how to make healthy food choices on their own. Our all-American kids love all-American food as well as food from their ethnic families’ culinary heritage, but the halal factor in store-bought products can be a bit confusing.

Asma Ahad, a food technologist at IFANCA (Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America), was there to dispell many of the myths surrounding food ingredients and what makes them halal or not. She did a great job engaging the kids in a hands-on activity and the kids were great listeners who were totally present during the entire presentation, including, of course the one that involved the food tasting.

I showed them how to make a Five Layer Bean Dip and Homemade Tortilla Chips and also had a few helpers along the way who came up to do some of the prep with me, which was so much fun.

The recipe is below and I’ve also created this video to show you how to make it.

 

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