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Archive for the ‘Appetizers’ Category


PicCollage

 

My Mom reminded me of this yesterday when I sent her pictures of the beautiful papaya I found at that Farmer’s Market. I’ll add the pic of the papaya I got at the end of this post. This is a lovely thick, icy, fruity, sweet, refreshing drink. In Aden it is sold in the markets on hot summer days. After a long day of fasting in Ramadan you’re body will welcome this with open arms. Just remember to make dua for me.

For two servings, you will need :

  1. 2 cups of ripe papaya

  2. 1 cup of whole creamy milk

  3. 2 scoops of plain vanilla ice cream

  4. 4 tablespoons of Vimto

Blend the papaya unit it is smooth, you can add a little water or preferably ice cubes to this while you are blending it. But make sure it is smooth. Now you are ready to assemble. Take a glass pour 1 tablespoon of Vimto and swirl it around, then spoon half a cup of papaya and pour 1/4 cup of milk , then spoon the  another half cup of papaya and a 1/4 cup of milk. Then add 1 more tablespoon of Vimto on top. Take a straw and swirl the mixture around gently. Add the scoop of ice cream and serve immediately. Enjoy.

 

CHECK OUT MY RAMADAN REFLECTIONS: DAY 2 . CLICK HERE 

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IMG_4893

Received a request for Jelly , Adeni style. I always thought everyone made it the same way, but I guess I was wrong. All things Adeni are special I guess. In any case, here is the recipe for Jelly, Adeni style. You will need:

  1. A packet of jelly (make sure it is Halal/Kosher. It should say on the packet)

  2. A can of fruit cocktail in thick syrup (all natural)

  3. 2 cups of water

  4. table cream (unsweetened)

That’s all you’ll need. In a saucepan, boil one cup of water (or however much water it says in the instructions on the jelly packet). Over the years, I’ve memorized this. It always says, “1 cups of hot water, and 1 cup of cold water.” Bring the water to a boil, turn off the heat, and then empty the jelly powder into the water and stir until dissolved. Then add one cup of cold water to the saucepan.

Open the can of fruit cocktail, and run it through a sieve. Make sure to save the juice that drains from it. Take the that juice/syrup and add it to the  jelly. Then divide the fruit cocktail among four moulds and add the jelly equally on top. Let it cool and then refrigerate until it’s set. Add a tsp of table cream and enjoy.

For as long as I remember, this is the way Adenis always make jelly in Ramadan.

  • CHECK OUT MY RAMADAN REFLECTIONS: DAY 1  Click Here 

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Shafoot 8

I was looking forward to making this Shafoot for my Dad in Yemen early December, but he passed away Nov. 1st 2014. May Allah have mercy on him. We plan and Allah plans, and Allah is the best of planners. To Allah we belong and to Him we return. Please keep my Dad in your Duas. Jazakum Allah Khayr.

My Yemeni-American friend here in Montgomery / Al , Abeer, suggested this recipe for a quick shafoot. Shafoot in Yemen is served as an appetizer especially in Ramadan. For 4 servings you will need :

1) 2 cups of yogurt ( I used greek) or sour cream
2) 1/2 cup of milk
3) 1/4 tsp of cumin
4) 1/4 tsp of dry thyme
5) salt to taste
6) 2 pita bread cut into cubes

Place the pita bread that you have cut into cubes in a dish.

Shafoot 1

 

 

Shafoot 2

Shafoot 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then whip the yogurt , milk, cumin, thyme, and salt until it’s nice a smooth. Add the mixture to the pita break pieces and gently incorporate using a spatula. Leave aside or refrigerate while you make the following two additions:

Shafoot 5 Shafoot 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sahaweq(g):

1) 1 green chilly ( jalapeno pepper) — remove seeds if it’s too spice for you
2) 1 tomato
3) 1/4 bunch of cilantro
4) 1 clove of garlic
5) optional: splash of lime juice
6) salt to taste

Place all in liquidizer and process . It’s like a green chutney. I am sure mint would also go great with this, but that’s up to you.

Shafoot 6

 

 

 

 

 

Salad :
1) cubed cucumber
2) cubed tomatoes
3) finely chopped salad
4) cilantro or parsley coarsely chopped
5) red or yellow onion finely sliced
6) optional : cubed avocado
7) spash of lime juice
8) salt to taste
9) 1/2 tap of olive oil

Mix them all together .

Shafoot 7

 

 

 

 

 

Now it is time to assemble a plate of the shafoot. In a plate scoop some of the yogurt and pita shafoot. Top with some of the sahawaq ( green chutney) and the salad. See picture at the beginning of this post. It’s ready to serve and it’s delicious !

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Cooked Apple Achar Done

When I was growing up, apples were rare in Yemen. I read about them in books; they were always red, sweet and juicy. They were never crispy, green or tangy. Then when I was five, my father was posted in the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen’s Embassy in England, and that was when I was introduced to the green apple. It was love at first sight. It was my favorite fruit to take to school, and I still clearly remember biting into them. Their tanginess sting my eyes momentarily as tears gush out . I always chose the hard and deep green ones because they were extra tangy. When I came to the states, I fell head over heels in love with caramel green apples. There was a chocolate store at the Mall of America in Minneapolis that used to sell amazing caramel green apples and I would make the 45 minute bus ride just for their sake. Well, the green apple has done it again with this beautiful spicy achar (spicy condiment). I was introduced to it when I visited my friend Lucky. She served it as a condiment during lunch and since then I’ve been wanting to get the recipe. So, Monday July 21st 2014, she opened her kitchen to me and showed me how to make it. I walked home hugging a big jar of it. So, here’s the recipe with pics. We made two batches. But for a single batch you will need:

 

1) 5 green apples –peeled, cored, and roughly chopped.

Apples peeled and coredApple cut up

2) 1 whole garlic finely minced

 Garlic

3) 1/2 handful of dried red chillies (more or less according to personal taste)

Bisbas

4) 1 and 1/2 tsp of Shan Achar/Pickle Seasoning (this seasoning has black cumin, fenugreek, aniseed, mustard seed, cumin, turmeric, chilly powder, garlic powder, ginger powder, salt and cloves)

Achar Seasoning

5) Salt to taste

6) 1 tsp and a half sugar

7) 1/4 cup of white vinegar

8) 1/4 cup of Mustard Oil

In a frying pan, under medium heat, add the mustard oil and let warm.

Mustard Oil

Then add the garlic and sautee for 2 minutes. Do not burn.

Add Garlic to Oil

Then add the dried chillies and let sautee for another 2 minutes.

Then add bisbas to oil and garlic

Then add the chopped green apple and mix well.

Chopped Apple

 

After 2 minutes of cooking add the Achar/Pickle seasoning, and the white vinegar.

Chopped Apple Seasoning

Cover and leave on low heat and let soften. About 6-8 minutes. Then uncover and add sugar and salt and taste. Then leave on stove under low heat until all the water has evaporated and only the oil oozes out of the mixture when you make a hold in the middle with a spatula. The consistency should be smooth, a little mushy with small chunks.

Cook Green Apple Achar

This is how it looks when it is done:

Cooked Green Apple 2

Let cool completely before emptying into jars and store in the refrigerator. Serve with rice dishes, as a dip. I also make chicken sandwiches and use this instead of ketchup and mustard. Enjoy !

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Samboosa 8

In Aden Samboosas (aka samosas) are a must in most households during the month of Ramadan. The first two weeks before Ramadan every household in Aden is making hundreds of these and freezing them. I make them occasionally as my husband and I are not big fans of friend food. You can also bake these, by spraying them with oil and then placing on a baking sheet and baking at 350 degree oven for 10 minutes on each side or until golden brown. But  for the most part they are friend. I used Spring Roll Wrappers that you can really find in any grocery store. If not then make a visit to the Asian grocery stores, and you’ll find them in the freezer section. This is they look like:

Sprint Roll Wrappers

I use two layers of these, as they’re pretty thin.  I cut each into three long rectangular strips like this:

Samboosa 1

I stuffed these with a potato stuffing. Traditionally it is made with ground beef and God Willing I’ll post the recipe for that once I make it. But here’s the recipe for the potato stuffing:  https://yemeniyah.com/2010/08/15/potato-stuffing-for-sambosa/ . You will also need some samboosa glue made from a little flour and water. They’ll help you glue the ends and give them neat ends. Now, once you have all the parts you can start assembling. So, take one of these strips and fold once to form a triangle at the bottom, and then fold again to make a triangular pocket. Then start stuffing:

Samboosa 4

Then continue to fold and glue the end.

Samboosa 6

It’ll turn out to be a perfect triangle.

Samboosa 7

I usually lay these on a tray and then freeze while still on the tray and then when frozen transfer them to ziplock bags. You can deep fry these in vegetable or corn oil until they are golden brown. I like to serve them with slices of lemon.

If you want to make your own wrappers here is the recipe: https://yemeniyah.com/2013/03/11/mutabaq-yemeni/ You will do the same as above, i.e. cut each later into long wide strips. But make sure you just use one layer, not two as with the spring roll wrappers.

Happy Cooking !

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Goat's Head

I love love love goat or lamb heads. It’s my favorite part of the animal. I know, I’m weird! My Mom told me that when she was pregnant with me that was all she craved. Yeah! That was me in there tee hee hee ! Well, this is how I like to make it. You will need:

1) a clean goat’s head meaning it’s been skinned, eyes removed, brain has been taken out (I like to make another dish with the brain and here is the recipe https://yemeniyah.com/2012/01/14/mokh-sheepgoat-s-brain/ ) . I like to cut the head in two equal halves, horizontally.

2) 3 tomatoes placed in hot water and then peeled , seeded and chopped

3) 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper or any red hot chilly powder that you like

4) 1/4 tsp of cumin

5) 1/4 tsp of coriander

6) 1/8 of a tsp of turmeric

7) salt to taste

8 ) 1/8 tsp of black pepper

9) 1 tablespoon of tomato paste

10) 6 tablespoons of Olive Oil

11) one onion diced

12) Cilantro for garnish

Alright, let’s start! Preheat oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit. I first took a frying pan and added the olive oil and under medium high heat i took the two goat head halves and browned them on each side. I took them out and placed the onions and sautéed them. Then I added the tomatoes and let them cook for about 3 minutes. Then all the spices –cumin, coriander, turmeric, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and salt. Let that cook for about 2 minutes, then add the tomato paste and add a cup of water. I prefer to add boiling hot water that I keep in a kettle on the side while I am cooking. After about 3 minutes add the goat head halves , add more water to cover them completely (if your frying pan is not deep enough then transfer to an oven dish), cover with foil and place in the oven. Once you hear it bubbling lower the temperature to 350 and let bake for an hour to an hour and a half. The only meat that needs to be tender is on the jawline of the goat’s head. Once that is tender then it is done. The sauce should be nice and thick, but not dry. Place on a serving platter, garnish with cilantro and serve with toasted french bread. Enjoy!

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Savory Parfait 1

I really enjoy making savory parfaits, so I experimented with some of my favorite ingredients and made this. I was amazed at how delicious it turned out. I used white quinoa and other favorites like: hot green chilly peppers (serano or Jalapeño work so take your pick), avocado, buttermilk and cilantro. So, here is what you’l need for about 3 parfaits :

1) Cup of cooked Quinoa (to cook place the quinoa in a mesh strainer and rinse with cold water, then heat 2 tsp of olive oil and add the quinoa. Stir for about one minute then add 2 cups of boiling water . Once it starts bubbling, cover and look under low heat for about 15 minutes. Let sit for a few minutes then fluff with a fork).

2) An avocado diced

3) spicy green condiment that is made by combining 2 hot chilly peppers (I used Serano), half a bunch of cilantro, 1/4 cup of juice from a lime, and salt to taste. You can adjust this to your taste–if you like it mild then use one pepper and take out the seeds.

4) about 3 cups of buttermilk

5) finely ground cayenne pepper

6) finely chopped cilantro for garnish

Now it is time to assemble. Take your serving glasses and add about 1/4 cup or less of buttermilk. Then add some a layer of quinoa, then a layer of the spicy green condiment. Then add another layer of the quinoa and the spicy green condiment. Then top it off with the buttermilk , and add the diced  avocado and garnish with a few dashes of colorful cayenne pepper and some cilantro. Serve warm or chilled. Absolutely delicious.

 

Savory Parfait 2

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