Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping

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Blue Cheese, Chicken, and Cauliflower Skillet with Bacon, Walnut, and Date Topping

I go through phases when I just don’t feel like cooking. At all.

Sometimes, if I’m really burned out, the better part of a week will go by before I feel inspired to cook. That’s when Mike gets to do one of his favorite things: live off the food from the Pakistani restaurant a block from where we live. It’s a windfall for him and a win for me too since I get a much-needed break and time to recharge.

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Middle Eastern Tahini, Date, and Cardamom Bulgur Wheat Breakfast Bake

Middle Eastern Tahini, Date, and Cardamom Bulgur Wheat Breakfast Bake

In the Middle East Mother’s Day is in March. Since my husband is – in some ways – quite a typical guy and tends to forget things like Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, and dentist appointments, I make note of two Mother’s Day dates every year so that my sweet Syrian mother-in-law isn’t forgotten in March and my own mom isn’t forgotten in May. This beautifully aromatic dish is something I’d happily serve to either of them for brunch on their special day....

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Middle Eastern Date-Filled Cookies (Ma’amoul)

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Different cultures have different rites of passage. Like getting a driver’s license and graduating high school. Other rituals are religious, such as Confirmation and Bar or Bat Mitzvah. Or tribal, like land diving, tooth sharpening, and facial tattooing....

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Moroccan-Spiced Carrot-Date Salad

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After snow flurries last week, spring has finally sprung here! What better way to enjoy it than with a beautiful, refreshing salad? This carrot salad is a bit of a surprise and nothing like the average picnic-staple carrot salad you might be more familiar with. It boasts a citrusy Moroccan-spiced dressing, onion for a savory pungency, and sweet Medjool dates and navel oranges to add sweet balance. Head over to my post on Honest Cooking for the full recipe!...

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Date, Walnut, and Blue Cheese Ball

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Around the holidays, I’ve noticed that in addition to loads of requests for cookie recipes, new appetizer ideas are always high in demand. Parties are frequent, and what better to serve than a spread of appetizers where people can come and go as they munch and chat, eating little bites from their favorite dishes....

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Date-Filled Cookies (Ma’amoul)

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Photo (taken by yours truly) of Date-Filled Cookies from my cookbook, An Edible Mosaic: Middle Eastern Fare with Extraordinary Flair. I bet your family has a favorite holiday cookie recipe. Maybe it’s Benne Cakes, Speculaas, Vanillekipferl, or Rugelach; no matter what it is, it’s probably very close to your heart. The memories conjured up by baking and eating the cookies are truly cherished. For my hubby’s family (and now for me!), this cookie is Ma’amoul....

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Superfood Spiced Autumn Truffles

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Look…they look like fudge inside! If you’re trying to avoid regular (read: sugar-coma-inducing) candy, this recipe will be your saving grace on Halloween night. Halloween at my mom’s house is like a free-for-all when it comes to sugar. She always has an insanely huge amount of candy on hand for giving away to kiddos trick-or-treating. She fills a stockpot (which is about four times as big as my normal big soup pot!) to the point of overflowing, and then it’s a frenzied dash for stuffing your bag (and your face) with candy. It is so hard to avoid that evil pot of temptation....

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Date Loaf Cake

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Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting, has just begun; this means that for a whole month Mike and I won’t be eating or drinking from sunrise to sunset. (I will still be posting regularly though — I have quite the backlog to share with you!) The point is to teach you patience, discipline, and empathy for others who aren’t as fortunate. I have to say, it really works…food and drink (especially cold water!) never taste as good the rest of the year as they do during Ramadan....

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Eid Mubarak & Date Bar Cookies

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  At the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan comes a three-day holiday, called Eid al-Fitr (which means “The Festival of Fast-Breaking”).  During this time charity is given to needy families, gifts are given to children, and people get dressed up and visit their family and friends.  People greet each other by saying Eid Mubarak (“Blessed Festival”).  When visitors arrive they’re usually served Turkish coffee and the traditional holiday date cookies of Ramadan.    Unfortunately, these sweets are not something that I make well (to be completely honest, when I last made these sweets they weren’t even fit for human consumption).  I need to […]...

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