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A sentimental type of photo shoot, my Grandma. جلسة تصوير ستي

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I grew up literally living in my grandmothers house, since my parents were constantly living around the world for business related reasons, I didn't enjoy living abroad as a child and therefore it came to time where my constant tears would flow like a river once its time to go to the airport, and it finally left my bag stranded at my grandmas house, and it left me stranded too.

 

My parents finally agreed that I would be excluded from the traveling scene, & I am to be situated in my grandmas house since it caused me that much grieve as a little child. Moving on, that is how I grew up...amongst my warm yet ever so slightly short tempered grandma. My memories are bucket filled with memories from my grandmas house, but something I especially remember and still laugh about with my grandma were the food rituals, beautifully articulated with healthy yet eve so delicious and succulent dishes...

Coming back from school would mean a ready plate filled with sizzling fried whole fish with a side of white rice and sliced lemon, a classic eh? All in front of that small cubed kitchen television watching Elmo. & when the weekends came and it was a family lunch, ending lunch meant eating dates like a crazy women and sometimes…just sometimes resulted in my grandma counting the pits to make sure I wasn't cheating. 

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The afternoon meant two ingredients, milk and green apple. A glass of cold milk would be handed by Ella the helper and a huge frown would come from my side, I use to get stomach pains every time until they realised I was somewhat lactose intolerant to such a heavy dose of milk, and followed by that, a bowl of sliced apples, a must. 

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Looking at the eating habits little children face now, I appreciate every essence of every dish I was given, I sometimes use to complain that one date is enough, and I hate milk, but now I actually wish I could so easily spend my day with such meal organisation and such health. 

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Sitti, I love you to bits. 

 

BBC Good Food features When Shaikha Cook's Kitchen

Lets just start by saying how Nicola Monteath is a super friendly and awesome editor, alongside Anas Cherur which is just as good in his photography. 

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This was actually one of the favourite shots of the Kitchen, our kitchen was actually sort of a disaster before this.

 

It included terrible dark brown cupboards with dark flooring (though it can't get worse? haha!) and well no light. We decided to change the flooring someday, and well that lit up the idea of renovating the kitchen and thats exactly what I did.

My mother is a great interior designer MashaAllah, she has beautiful ways of transforming a place with both buying new pieces alongside keeping the old and pimping it up.

The techniques she used that I love and thank her for till now are:

-Using paint to renovate cupboards, old tables, and old chairs. pain them away! From light pink, to whimsical blue, to shades of green, she did it and it worked.

-Wallpaper in the kitchen, not to detailed and loud, but simple elegant wallpaper that fits in a clean manner.

-Incorporating things that wouldn't necessarily be in a kitchen such as a simple chandelier and etc.

-And Finally, light colours to bring in more light, which was crucial for us.

To read the feature, it'll be available in Good Food Middle East MAY issue.

Greasy burgers & fries,

Shaikha 

We are making Bacon & Maple French Toast!

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This is an indulgent dessert, & I am telling you so beforehand so none is blamed for the extra amount of Bacon & Luscious Maple Syrup-ly caramel in this concoction.

The french toast has no added sugar, to balance everything out, and is made using "Rainbow" evaporated milk instead of regular milk because I simply love the flavour of it, besides its the "Emirati" milk that locals need to confess too….*Hint hint*…Karak.

Its then fried in luscious butter, topped with melting scoops of vanilla ice cream, drizzled with a rainbow milk maple syrup caramel (More rainbow milk..YUM)…and finally, plummets of beautifully crispy Bacon…THE BOMB.

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To make this, you will need:

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-1 Rustic Bread Loaf, pick your favourite. You can be versatile with this and experiment.

-1 Cup Rainbow Milk

-1/3 of a vanilla bean (Or 1 tsp vanilla exract)

-2 Eggs

-1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup (I use Aunt Jemima)

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For this, simply slice the bread Thickly, mix all of the other ingredients in a wide bowl with a whisk. Heat a skillet on medium high heat and melt a knob of butter. Dip one slice at a time in the egg mixture and cook on both sides until beautifully golden. 

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Rainbow milk maple Caramel:

-1 cup sugar

-A drizzle of water just to avoid burning

-150 ml Rainbow Milk

-1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

-1 teaspoon Maple Syrup

-50g butter

For the caramel, simply heat the sugar with water (Mix them first) on high heat without stirring it, keep it until it turns into an amber colour then drizzle in the rainbow milk SLOWLY…I'll stress it again..SLOWLY. Add the butter, then finally add the vanilla and maple syrup. Pour into a jar and allow to cool before using.

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For the Bacon:

-3-4 Strips Bacon

-Sunflower Oil

Simply fry the bacon strips until crispy and drain on kitchen paper and chop coarsely.

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To serve:

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A thick slice of that luscious french toast batter dipped bread +

1-2 Scoops of Vanilla Ice Cream +

Generous Drizzles of Caramel + 

Crumbles of Crispy Bacon

 

Bon appétit!

 

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