My connection with the kitchen started way before I even knew it !
As a child, I was seldom allowed into the kitchen. We always had a cook and my working mother was not very fond of the kitchen. Whenever we had guests over was about the only time she spent any time in the kitchen. I remember many a time trying to help out and being told to go “set the table” or “stir the ingredients” which used to frustrate me and send me off to my room.
While at university, I bought a recipe index book. Had no idea why I did it, it just called me. And I started collecting recipes. I got my mom to send me recipes from her, her mother and my aunt and grandmother, both of whom amazing cooks and hosts ! I looked through magazines and cut out recipes that I liked and I started buying recipe books. I loved chocolate so I bought a Hershey’s recipe book. I watched a show where Oprah was hosting a cook who did healthy recipes so I ordered the book. I collected tons of recipes, imagined what it would be like to make them and actually made tweaks and hacks to match how I felt I would do them.
By the end of my time at university, I had a ton of recipes that I bought back with me to the Emirates at the time. I remember I once saw an advertisement in Gulf News for a recipe contest for a 7-course menu, participated and won without having tried any of the recipes I sent ! I just knew they were good.
As a young wife and working woman, I started experimenting in my own kitchen. I loved experimenting with everything, from traditional Egyptian recipes to cuisines from around the world. And I loved entertaining. Our house was small and we did not have house help, yet, I tried to have all our friends over (about 30 at the time) almost every other week. It gave me pleasure to cook for them and try out my new recipes !
Cooking is my therapy. I love to cook a meal and set an intention for it. It calms me, keeps me fully engaged and in flow, and bring me joy and serenity. It is a way I connect with my daughter, and a way I show my love to my family and friends.
I never had much time, and I realise I am attracted to recipes that :
- Taste good
- Are relatively light and healthy
- Are simple and easy to make and do not require complicated ingredients
- Are possible to make ahead and freeze
- Do not require too much preparation time or too many pots and pans (cause I used to do the dishes)
Many years of cooking and baking later, with 2 grown children and a full time career that I am very passionate about, I still love to cook !
This collection of recipes is my attempt to share this passion with the world, and ensure that the recipes I have compiled and tweaked over the years find their way to the homes and hearts of as many people as possible and makes them warm and happy.
I want to enjoy sharing them, so am letting go of the need to do it all or do it perfectly or post recipes on a schedule ! I have set up the recipe folders on the blog and intend to fill them slowly and surely.
May you enjoy making these recipes and may they bring you as much love and joy as you savour them with your loved ones as they do me !