Monthly Archives: February 2010

Brownie Bites

My 2-1/2 year old son Talal helped me bake these brownies. This was his first dish and he did absolutely wonderful. I just measured the ingredients for him and he was good to go. So not only can your kids help eat them but they can have fun making them as well. This is a easy and delicious brownie recipe and I hope your family enjoys them as much as mine did.

1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
3 tablespoons cocoa
1 tablespoon light corn syrup or honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons milk

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 9-inch square baking pan.

2. Stir together butter, sugar and vanilla in bowl. Add eggs; beat well with spoon. Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually add to egg mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in nuts, if desired. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

3. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until brownies begin to pull away from sides of pan. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Prepare frosting; spread over brownies. Cut into squares.

1. Beat butter, cocoa, corn syrup and vanilla in small bowl until blended. Add powdered sugar and milk; beat to spreading consistency.

Yields: about 1 cup

Yields: 17 small(like I have) or 8 large

Adapted from Hershey

Lamb Curry

1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon ginger paste
2 teaspoons garlic paste
2 teaspoons garam masala
2 teaspoons sea salt
1-1/2 pounds lamb, cubed
2 teaspoons sunflower oil
1 teaspoon cumin, ground
12 whole cloves
4 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 green chili’s, stem removed and slit length wise
3/4 tablespoon paprika
1 cup water

1. In a small bowl add yogurt, ginger paste, garlic paste, garam masala and salt, mix together. In a medium sized dish add lamb and yogurt mixture, coat well. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours.

2. In a saute pan on medium-high heat add oil. Add cumin, cloves, cardamom, bay leaves and cinnamon. Saute for 30 seconds until aromatic. Add onion and cook until tender, about 3 minutes.

3. Add lamb and yogurt mixture and cook for 15 minutes. Add tomato paste and chili’s. Mix well. Add water, mixing well. Bring to a full boil. reduce heat to low-medium, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with rice.

 Yields: 4 servings



Before their was coffee and tea sahlab or salep as called in Turkey was quite popular. This drink spread all over the Middle East, North Africa and Europe throughout the 17th and 18th century. Sahlab is a flour made from grinding the dried tubers of Orchis mascula, Orchis militaris and related species of orchids, which contain a nutritious starch-like polysaccharide called glucomannan.

Many people in the West are unknown to this mysterious drink. I have seen several recipes online which uses cornstarch instead of sahlab and if you are in a country where you can not find sahlab then you could do this as well. However, check your local Turkish, Greek or Egyptian markets out and you may be able to. This delicious drink reminds me of flower fields as I drink it, as the taste just rushes you there. In Saudi they make this drink with cardamom and ginger instead of orange blossom water and cinnamon. A lot of you have contacted me on where you can get this powder in the states. I have personally never seen it there but I did find one place you can order pure sahlab from at a good price right here.

5 cups milk
1 tablespoon sahlab
1-3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon orange blossom water
Ground cinnamon for garnish

1. Dissolve sahlab into 1 cup cold milk.

2. In a 2-quart pan add remaining milk and sugar. Bring to a full boil then reduce to medium. Pour the cold milk and sahlab into the pan. Whisk continuously until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and add orange blossom water.

3. Pour into serving cups and sprinkle with ground cinnamon

Yields: 6-8 servings.


Their are several different desserts here in Saudi all named harrisa and maybe you even remember my favorite north African dip which is also called harrisa. Hey, I did not name this stuff but whoever did should be more original. Anyway, on to this magnificent dessert. This is rather easy to make and you will be quite surprised by the outcome. I really wanted to try something new for my family and as we sit down for tea I was hoping that it tasted as good as it looked. It was even better then that we quickly gobbled down every single one of these.

1/4 cup all purpose flour
1-1/2 cups dates, pitted and chopped
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon cardamom, ground
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1-1/2 teaspoons sugar

1. On medium heat in a 9-inch skillet add butter. Add walnuts and mix until lightly toasted. Add cardamom, sugar, dates and flour. With a wooden spoon mix until nuts and dates are covered. Remove from heat.

2. Place your hand in a plastic bag and shape mixture into golf ball size shapes.

Yields: 16