Friday, July 2, 2021

Mutton Dopiaza


1kg mutton pieces (goat’s shoulder portion)

2 tbsp National Dopiaza spice mix (Shan Stew/Dopiaza works too)

4 tbsp Ginger garlic paste 

2 cups yogurt (room temp)

1 small super thin sliced onion

3-4 small thick sliced onions

4-5 green chilies


1 tbsp coriander powder

1 tbsp cumin powder

1/2 tbsp turmeric powder

1/2 tsp red chili powder (add more acc to taste)

2 pcs black cardamom

5 cardamoms

1 pc cinnamon stick 1”

5 black pepper corns

5 cloves

Generous scatter of salt over the meat


In a large cooking pot, add super thin sliced onion and 1.5 cups of oil  Sprinkle a tiny bit of salt (browns them slow and even) and fry them at medium heat until light brown.

Add 1/4 cup water to bring heat down, follow with 4 tbsp ginger garlic paste and the meat. Increase heat to high, and cook for a minute, allowing ginger and garlic to kill any smells.

Add 2 tbsp National / Shan Dopiaza masala and additional spices (list above) and fry well, tossing around, for another minute. Salt should be scattered over the meat, slightly more than 1/2 tbsp. 

Add 2 cups yogurt (room temp to avoid curdling/lumping) and cook well for about 3-5 minutes. 

Add enough water to drown all the meat and bring the stew to a boil. 

Next, set on simmering low-moderate heat, cover with a lid and cook while stirring occasionally to avoid burning.

Mutton is to be cooked until it is well done (meat is not chewy, and slides off the bones easily). Time may vary for mutton to tenderize. For me, it took an hour. As water evaporates, add more until meat is done.

Cook until water dries and oil separates. Add green chilies and thick sliced onions and stir fry well until onions soften a little. Add water to make a gravy or curry according to your liking. Adjust salt.

Serve with a garnish of chopped cilantro, if you like. 

Monday, May 31, 2021

Foodie Diaries: Weekend Chit Chat: Kitchen Ate My Life

What’s Cookin’? ••• Get ready for a rant! ••• Well, I was stuck with a never ending story called goat chops! Since I have zero guts and patience to get an instapot, I was sitting like a watchdog next to a boiling pot this afternoon ••• It has something to do with meat quality as well because there was just too much fat and the meat never softened ••• Also, considering the ungrateful, argumentative, and criticizing audience that I am serving, my kitchen-spiration is lost. Cooking is becoming a dreaded chore! I’m always hunting (online and on foot) for custom dietary needs (most are Internet influenced). Sometimes taste is compromised because let’s face it, if it is not sugar it won’t be sweet! If there’s no cheese there’s no cheese! I broke out of quarantine with a grocery trip. That’s that!

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Chicken Liver Omelet

Livers of 2 chicken precooked as you like
Half small onion, sliced
1/2 small tomato, sliced
Red chili flakes according to taste
Salt according to taste
Italian seasoning mix, 1/4 tsp
2 eggs, beaten with a tbsp of water
Black pepper for garnishing

1. Heat 5-6 tbsp oil in a large frying pan
2. Add onions and fry for 15-20 seconds
3. Add tomatoes and fry for 15-20 seconds
4. Add mixture of beaten eggs in one corner of the pan and let it slide around to cover the pan
5. Add a pinch of salt, and Italian seasoning
6. Add cooked chicken liver on one half of the egg
7. Add chili flakes
8. Fold the omelet in half and garnish with black pepper
9. Serve hot and top with more salt and pepper as you like

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Serious Need of Kitchen-spiration! Liver! Liver! & Other Stories

In serious need of kitchen-spiration! It’s becoming too mundane, boring, and nerve racking. Ever get the feels like the kitchen is eating your life and the post cooking cleanup routines are becoming a pain?

✨ EID MUBARAK ✨ Chai Papa breakfast is back! ☕️
🌙 ✨ Eid Desserts Ensemble
🔸Sheer Khurma (Siwaiyyan)
🔸Keto, Dairy-Free Blueberry Muffins
🔸Cinnamon roll & Lemon pound cake brought over by SIL

Friday, May 21, 2021

Eid 2021: Peonies, Spring Blooms, Sweets & Treats

Some nerve popped in my grapefruit and I decided to do an Eid lunch party theme this year. Maybe, it was to do justice to the Ramadan shortcomings *hides face* Super low energy levels made me go Zombie Mode for 30 days. Eid had to be a creative outburst. It's Spring and the craft store tried to sell me everything peony. So, I went with peonies! The peonies vine garland and tablecloth were the perfect things for my little family luncheon. Combine lace with flowers, add a delicate birdcage, and boom! it starts looking a bit Victorian in the house. Food had to be fast = Fast Food! Haha! Pun! (lame joke alert!) We settled for pizza from Pizza and Gyro in Virginia, and gyro from Halal Guys. 

Eid cards! The tradition was started by Mannee (she has bailed this year haha!) and Bua Beeya are carrying it onward. Sara's design this year was a geometric, retro looking art piece created by washi tape pieces and self-drawn doodles. It's hard to tell them apart, she's that good! Mine was a floral crescent moon with tassels hanging from the bottom edge. I printed out the graphic (enlarged on Photoshop) and colored it using Crayola supertip markers. I still need to write Eid Mubarak in Urdu under their names! And photos from Eid go inside as a memento.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Start of Spring & Vaccine Shenanigans

Spring Forward ••• 
Ramadan Prep ••• 
Spring/ Pre-Ramadan Cleanup ••• 
Vaccines ••• 
Final Room Cleanup ••• 
Spring Decor

An hour just disappeared ••• that’s Spring Forward aka Daylight Savings for you. It won’t impact my hamster wheel spin so I don’t give two cents. Practically though, things are going to start heating up now! For one, there are taxes to be done! Two, Ramadan approaches! Say goodbye to the afternoon Chai and cookie. Three, I’ll be battling serious gastrointestinal apocalypse and morbidly low energy levels during fasting. Four, the kitchen will continue to eat all the time. And five, I’ll be worrying about lawn care and cicadas!

yeh mein hoon, yeh meri vaccine lag gayee hai, aur ab meri paaawwwriiii hogi
Counting my blessings ••• Everyday is a miracle ••• I’m grateful today Alhamdulillah to have received my first Pfizer shot against the deadly Covid-19 ••• Happy to be alive while so many are lost ••• It’s been a complete year of quarantine this week for me, started on March 20, 2020, and I have kept my game strong for my parents ••• God bless my brother who has been my grocery delivery without a word of complain (I’ve bribed him with keto desserts ) ••• In an year’s time some things have gone missing ••• My behind the wheel confidence (particularly highways), some friends who didn’t care I was caring for parents and moved on (I understand, the world’s a fast place I am a Diamondback ), the annual vacation was cancelled, I haven’t eaten out for an year (insane cooking overload) ••• But there hasn’t been a single day of deprivation during the hoarding madness or ill health during the killer pandemic spread Alhamdulillah •••

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Winter’s Fading Me Out

 ❄️ Winter’s fading me out now! Blimey, it’s cold! The driveway is a big ice slide right now. The yards are grass flavored shaved ice at the moment. And for a feel-cold-even-when-the-AC-is-on person like me, getting the mail from my mailbox feels like attempting to visit the polar ice cap! The nose has to hide! 

I’m still quarantined because of elderly parents. It’ll be a full year in March (minus the pharmacy drive thru pickup trips) since I went out. Cabin fever (very slightly) has begun to hit but for the most part I am HAPPY to be inside. 

Last winter month is rolling and the horrors of Spring (cicada invasion, HVAC tuneup issues, leaky windows in monsoon, runaway gardner, yard turning to Ferngully, and yaddi yaddi yadda) are all waiting to unleash themselves.

7:18pm, After Dinner: Taking some peaceful time for quick Instagram blogging. The Dal Chawal Qeema have put me in a highly comfortable place and sleep has been induced. Yet, I must blab about the mundane passage of today’s time. 

Ice is beginning to melt and this could be the last of the frozen that we are seeing. My favorite trash reality (as I fondly call it) TV show Bigg Boss came to an end last night. As usual, rigged results but good show. I have been following it since October and it always stays with me through the birthday season, through Fall and Winter. Its end means Spring’s arriving •••

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Existing Solo, Happiest Girl In The World

Rolling happily single at 34 gives shameful licenses to many to question my awesomesauce existence. *unsheathes the sword 🗡* Sara feels this is a verbally armed post V-Day attack. Well, it’s been the woolly mammoth in the room for over a decade so let’s give it a fat spotlight in February shall we? Marriage! I’m on a wild run from the sugarcoated suicide! All opinions strictly my own influenced by my own reality/parallel reality.

Thankfully, Prince Charming (if he’s at all been created by divine intervention) is possibly living in the Misty Mountains of Middle Earth, is on the death wish run like the Witcher, or on a far off planetary body in the supermassive universe because the world doesn’t understand his cosmic existence! He is missing but he is not missed. 

There have been too many frogs in his royalty’s absence. Their innocent *blink blink* follies are my legit excuse to exist solo! You may be a knight, good sir! But No! you cannot kill the dragon because I own it ••• Everyone wants to kill the dragon 🐉 

In 34 years of life I’ve taken many blows on my self-esteem, have risen from the ashes, and have not showcased my feelings because I’m not a weakling. I have seen too many sour, toxic relationships of close and distant ones and have experienced severe anger and pain at their helplessness. I’ve witnessed the shallowness of individuals, the commercial greed and fraudulent motives. Considering this fruit basket, my comfort level with human beings and my confidence in their faithfulness is a different case story altogether. I am mortified! My senses that Cupid shoots at are paralyzed with fear! 

“To love is to destroy, and to be loved is to be destroyed” - Jace Wayland’s quote pretty much sums up the folly of this world’s heartbreak design. Our modus operandi don’t match. 

Next time you look at me, focus on what completes me: battles that I’ve won, & the kickass fight I am putting up. A missing soulmate is a fairytale hypothesis, not a guarantee of happiness. Today, existing solo, I’m the happiest girl in the world. Respect it! Believe it! Be happy for me. I may be life’s biggest rockstar you know! 🎤 💥 Mic Drop! Stage on Fire 🔥 Abbie Slays 😎 


Monday, February 15, 2021

Repotting Severus Snape, the Snake Plant

🌱 Repotting Severus Snape - my Snake Plant. This is my pandemic plant. I created a yet another example of procrastination and did not repot it. The potting mix had been laying in the garage (almost an year now!). My brother got a Snake Plant too and he repotted his the very month he got it. Mine has seen so much as a  baby. It was moved around during the kitchen makeover, then stayed in the sunroom in a corner on the floor. I scurried around, overloaded with chores, and added a few drops of water (often ZamZam) into it. Finally after an year ••• 
I’m getting him ready for Spring  photoshoots. I’m infamous for killing a coral cactus (Gellart Grindelwald) last year (overwatering *sigh*) ••• Despite the day’s work load, I decided to do this. It’s a low maintenance plant, so I am a bit hopeful. I’m worried because the pot (late Grindelwald’s pot) has no holes. Snake Plant, like cacti, need drainage and very little watering.

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Listening to a Song for Heart and Soul

Care for a conversation? We talk a lot, we don’t listen. We hear a lot, we don’t listen. Listen! Emptiness speaks. Solitude screams. Silences have a language.

Just Want You To Know Who I Am
Once Upon A Time In A Faraway Land ...
Making A Song For Heart and Soul