Banana Date Cake

My husband has been away on a trip and before he left he bought a large bag of bananas. My daughter eats a banana every day with breakfast, but we were left with about 9 that had reached the point that they weren’t nice enough for anything but some good ole banana bread.

I haven’t made banana bread in a long time, so I went to my typical trusty source for recipes: Allrecipes. I found one titled “Banana Crumb Muffins” and decided it looked promising. One tip I would like to suggest anytime that you use a recipe online is to check and see if there are any comments. A lot of times your will find helpful tips that make the recipe even better.



Banana Date Cake/Muffins
[This recipe makes 1 small bundt cake, about 16 mini muffins or about 8 regular sized muffins]

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp vanilla (I used powder)
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup melted butter
3 very ripe mashed bananas
4-5 tbsp. date paste (I used premade, but you can make your own)
For the crumb topping
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp. flour
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp. butter

Directions:
1 – Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C)
2 – Lightly grease (I used butter) your cake pan (I used a bundt tin) or muffin pan.
3 – In a bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and vanilla (if you use liquid vanilla, add it with the wet ingredients instead)
4 – In another bow, beat together the bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter.
5 – stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until it is moistened.
6 – Spoon the batter into the pan half-way. Add the date-paste (for my cake I added the date paste like a ring all the way around the bundt tin — for muffins I formed little balls and pressed them into the batter) Add the rest of the batter on top covering the date paste.
7 – In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle the topping over your cake or muffins.
8 – bake in  the oven for about 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Banana Date Mini Muffins

I hope that you enjoy this recipe. If you give it a try, be sure to leave me a comment below telling me what you think!

الحمدلله

S

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Ramadan Recipes: Tomato Macaroni Beef Soup


Tomato Macaroni Beef Soup

Ingredients:
-1 tbsp olive oil
-1 cup of ground beef
-1 small onion [chopped]
-1 tomato chopped
-1 cup macaroni
-4 tbsp oats
-4 tbsp tomato paste
-2 tbsp Arabic mixed spice
-salt & pepper (to taste)
-1 tbsp chopped parsley/dried parsley
-8 cups of water

Method:
*{I use a multicooker to make my soups, but you can use a slow cooker or a  regular pot.}
1. Brown onion, tomato and beef with the olive oil (if you’re using a multicooker/slow cooker do this in a frying pan and then add it to your cooker — if you’re using a regular pot do this in the pot)
2. Add the rest of ingredients to your pot and cook (if stovetop put it on a low heat and check it now and again to make sure that you don’t need to add any water)
3. Leave it in your cooker/pot for about an hour. (Check and see if you want to add any more salt/pepper — If you are cooking stovetop you might want to add the macaroni after the first 30 mins if you don’t like them to be too soft)
4. Add the parsley and serve with lemon.

Enjoy!

الحمدلله
♥

S

Ramadan Recipes: White Chicken & Oats Soup

 

White Chicken & Oats Soup


Ingredients:
-1 tbsp olive oil
-2 chicken breasts [cubed]
-1 small onion [chopped]
-1/3 cup lentils [rinsed]
-6 tbsp oats
-1 tbsp cumin
-salt & pepper (to taste)
-1 tbsp chopped parsley/dried parsley
-8 cups of water

Method:
*{I use a multicooker to make my soups, but you can use a slow cooker or a  regular pot.}
1. Brown onion and chicken with the olive oil (if you’re using a multicooker/slow cooker do this in a frying pan and then add it to your cooker — if you’re using a regular pot do this in the pot)
2. Add the rest of ingredients to your pot and cook (if stovetop put it on a low heat and check it now and again to make sure that you don’t need to add any water)
3. Leave it in your cooker/pot for about an hour. (Check and see if you want to add any more salt/pepper)
4. Add the parsley and serve with lemon.

Enjoy!

الحمدلله

S

Eid, 25th Birthday, Life

Tea on the plane to Ha’il
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A surprise cake during Eid festivities
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Birthday cake and balloons from Yasser & his sisters
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Dinner with the neighbors to celebrate all the recent marriages.
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Beautiful mountains of Ha’il
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Surprise from a friend
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Baby duck at the farm
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Tiny coffee
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Y’s camping trip
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Stopping to pray on the way back to Ha’il.
The ground had dried after recent rain.
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الحمدلله


S
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Chateau Marrakech – Moroccan Cuisine

Chateau Marrakech – Moroccan Cuisine

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The Menu
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Decor
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Moroccan and Saudi Flag
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Waiting Area
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Olives
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Bread Rolls
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Harira Soup
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Beef and Potato Tagine
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Chicken Couscous
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Chicken Pastille 
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 Mint Tea
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Sweets

Delicious. I don’t think that I need to say much more.

الحمدلله


S
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Rose Milk Tea

I was living in Iowa before I came to work in Saudi and there was this bubble tea shop at the local mall that sold chilled milk teas with those little tapioca pearls at the bottom. My favorite was the rose milk tea. It was slightly sweet with a subtle taste of rose and the creamy texture of milk. Ooh, how I’ve missed those!

I took a little nap after work today and when I woke up I was craving a cup of coffee, but decided that the caffeine probably wasn’t a good idea if I wanted to get back to sleep at a decent hour. Instead I thought to make a cup of tea.

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isolated pitcher

I turned on the electric kettle to boil some water. On the stove I heated some milk. In a cup I put 3 rose buds, a drop of rose water and 1 black teabag. Once the water was boiled I filled the cup about a third of the way and let the tea steep. When the milk became hot I added 2 tablespoons of sugar and then used my frothing wand to make some foam. I removed the rose buds and then poured the sweet milk into the cup. I left the teabag for another minute and then removed it.

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My experimental rose milk tea was absolutely perfect and instantly reminded me of a hot boba less version of the bubble tea that I used to get while living in IA.

Definitely give it a try!

الحمد لله‎


S
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Kbaybah Ha’il • كبيبا حائل

How to make
Kbaybah Ha’il • كبيبا حائل

Almost 3 years ago my friend A taught me how to make this dish. It’s actually Y’s favorite dish and although it takes a long time to prepare and cook I’m always happy to do it because seeing him enjoy it makes the process 100% worthwhile.

To make Kbaybah Ha’il you will need:
*Egyptian rice
*Grape leaves
*Olive oil
*Onion
*Tomato
*Parsley
*Lemon
*Spices (mixed spice or curry)
*Broth/stock

الحمد لله‎


S
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The Farm in Al Majma’ah

The Farm in Al Majma’ah
المزرعة في المجمعة

My dear friend A invited me to join her and her family at their farm in a small city north of Riyadh called Al Majma’ah. A’s brother also invited Y and so we gladly excepted. I’m so glad that we did because it was a fantastic experience that I hope I get to have again.


[THIS VIDEO CONTAINS MUSIC]

A’s brother told Y that it was about an hour drive. Y knew once we saw a road sign that it would be at least double that, but we enjoyed the ride anyways. Through the desert we went. Finally we arrived to the town and a few moments later we were pulling off the road onto a dirt path that led us to an area with a gate and cement wall. We got out of the car. Y went off with the guys and I went into the kitchen to greet the girls.

I sat in the kitchen for a few minutes chatting with A’s sister in law H, who greeted me warmly. Soon after A’s mom came in along with A’s aunt and two of her cousins. They smiled at me and I felt so comfortable being there with them, even from the very beginning.

We sat to have coffee and sweets. Soon after we went to sit outside and A’s aunt started a fire. Teas warmed in pots along the outside of the fire and a few ears of corn were roasted. They played some music and the kids danced. Eventually A’s mom called us back inside to have dinner.

It was cold, colder than I have experienced here in Saudi Arabia. I had on layers and layers, including 3 pairs of socks at one point and I was loving it. Eventually we went into one of the rooms and set out all of the blankets on the floor. We slept.

The next morning we got up and had breakfast. The typical Saudi breakfast with beans, eggs, liver with peppers etc. After the breakfast A and I went for a walk around the farm. She showed me the lines of date palms and we laughed at some camels just beyond the cement wall.

When we got back A’s mom, sister and sister in law had started to barbecue chicken on the grill. When it was finished we ate and then relaxed.

Soon after Y and I put our things in the car and started out journey back to Riyadh.

الحمد لله‎


S
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With new friends

I finally got around to inviting the girls from work over for some late night tea and snacks. I’ve been really blessed to have met such lovely ladies at KSU and it’s amazing how well we get along while we have only known each other for a short time. Here are some of the snapchat photos from that night.

The spread
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Green tea with mint
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Cake from Eman
Snapchat--2886039132974171407Gift from Shazia
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Gift from Fateha
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I was surprised by some housewarming gifts. I was given gorgeous serving dishes and a dainty little silver tea set. They’re so lovely and the perfect things for entertaining on nights like the one that I shared with these girls.

Working abroad allows me to constantly meet new people from all over the world. There are people who come and go, but then there are the fantastic people that I know I will have to do my best to keep in contact with when we go separate ways. This is a beautiful thing about working and living in another country. You find people that you have connections with and at the same time there is almost always incredibly interesting conversation as we all come from very different lives and backgrounds.

الحمد لله‎

S
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