Wednesday, May 29, 2013

~Chocolate Syrup~

Homemade Chocolate Syrup

1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup water
dash of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

In a small saucepan, add sugar, cocoa, and salt.  Whisk together gently.  Add water.  Bring mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally.  Reduce heat and cook 1 minute.  Remove from heat and add vanilla.  Cool.  Store in the refrigerator.

For chocolate milk, add 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup to 8 oz. of milk.  Heat for hot chocolate.
For milk shakes, combine 1 cup cold milk, 1/4 cup chocolate syrup and 2 cups (1 pint) of vanilla ice cream to a blender.  Blend.
This syrup would also make a delicious dessert garnish or ice cream topping.

Recipe source- Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook, 1968.

And….as a special BONUS….I found this recipe for Super Special Chocolate Milk today and I HAD to share it!  It takes “chocolate milk” to a whole new level! :-)

Super Special Chocolate Milk

A hand full of ice
1 cup whole milk
¼ cup heavy cream
1 TBSP. vanilla extract
¼ to 1/3 cup chocolate syrup

Put everything into a drink shaker and shake vigorously for 30 seconds. Pour into a fancy glass and enjoy!
This would be a fun “fancy” drink for the kidlets to enjoy. :-)
I know I should “do the math” here to show the $AVING$ from making your own homemade chocolate syrup, but to be quite honest…my brain battery is running a little low right now. If any of you mathematician types out there want to have a go at it….please feel free! :-)

Right now it’s time for me to go “plug in” to some shut eye.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Watermelon granita with rosewater, mint and lemon

Having confessed my love for watermelon before, I have to say that I am really enjoying exploring all the watermelon recipes being posted on the lovely blogs I follow. There are many I have book marked and look forward to try soon, like this watermelon feta and basil salad on Maris’s In good taste blog  and today’s recipe which was posted by Jessica from kitchenbelleicious
The combination of mint, lemon and watermelon was too good to miss and the idea of a mint syrup was new to me and posed so many possibilities for drinks and desserts that I HAD to try it.
I stuck to the recipe except for adding 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of rosewater because I loved the pairing of rosewater and watermelon in the watermelon pomegranate drink and I thought it would work here too.
Before we get to the recipe I would like to thank Shumaila of the novice house wife for being extremely kind. She passed the versatile blogger award to me, Shumaila thank you so much..I am honored.

5 cups of watermelon cubed
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup soda
1/2 cup mint syrup
Mint Syrup:
1 cup of water
1 cup sugar
1 bunch of fresh mint
In a medium saucepan, combine sugar and water.
Boil for 5 minutes, without stirring. Remove from heat and pour over the mint, then gently crush the leaves with the back of your spoon.
Strain the syrup
Use 1/2 cup in the granita ans store the rest in the refrigerator.

Blend the watermelon  with the lemon juice, rosewater and mint syrup,  until very smooth.
Transfer the mixture to a shallow pan (make sure that the pan fits in your freezer) and freeze for 1  hour.
Remove from freezer and scrape with a fork.
Repeat this scraping procedure every hour or so until the consistency is “snowy” (at least 4 hours.)
* As for the watermelon granita, I think it will be great with orange blossom too. The soda is blended with the watermelon and the other ingredients.

Cant imagine what talent this lady has.  She posts most lovely presentation & recipe on her blog which I couldnt resist of sharing with you:

Friday, May 24, 2013

~Lip Balms~

Clinique Launches Chubby Sticks With Eight New (and Permanent) Shades!

Super nourishing lip balm, loaded with mango and shea butters. Just what dry, delicate lips need to feel comfortably soft and smooth. Now in 16 natural looking lip tints in all, each with a subtle sheen.

You can also create your own shade by mixing and matching here

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Chicken Sheesh Kababs

What is with food on a skewer that makes it so appealing?
Is it more fun to eat? is it the individual potions? ease of handling? or does it remind us of our childhood love for popsicle and lollipops?
I don’t know..
All I know is that this is one of my favorite recipes for chicken and I do have many.
The recipe I am sharing with you today is my own.It is the result of so many trials and errors. You see Shish tawook is a famous middle eastern dish that you will find on the menu of each and every restaurant that serves mediterranean food and I am nothing if I don’t love a challenge. All I have to say about this recipe is..we don’t order Shish tawook when we eat out any more :)

 Shish tawook chicken
skin-less  boneless chicken cut into cubes or strips
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 cloves of garlic minced
3/4 tablespoon mustard
1 tablespoon soya sauce
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons yogurt
1 teaspoon paprika
Mix the marinade and add the chicken.
 Make sure you coat all the pieces.
Marinate over night  (If you don’t have time anything over half an hour is fine)
Skewer the chicken and grill in the oven or on a grill.

Friday, May 17, 2013


Homemade buttered pretzels

~ big homemade buttered pretzels ~

These are the best big, soft pretzels I’ve ever had.  I tried to make these, and turned out yummy and decided to dress them up in one flavour and they were! YUM!
for the dough:
5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
4 and 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast (not fast acting)
2 scant cups warm water

Place all ingredients in Kitchen Aid mixer bowl (or mix with hand). Beat until mixed well. The dough will be kind of hard to knead, add a tiny bit more water, if needed. Knead until soft and smooth, About 5 minutes.
Place dough in a buttered glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest in a warm place for 30 minutes. It should be noticeably puffed, but not necessarily doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Oil two large baking sheets. When the 30 minutes is up, transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface and divide into 12 equal pieces.
Allow the pieces to rest, uncovered, for 5 minutes. This will make the dough much easier to handle. Combine 1 cup warm water and 1/4 cup baking soda in a shallow bowl. Roll each of the 12 pieces into a 28 inch rope. Shape into a pretzel.
Dip each pretzel in the soda wash, and place 6 on each baking sheet.
Sprinkle each of the pretzels with coarse kosher salt. Allow them to rest for 10 minutes. Bake for 4 minutes. Rotate baking sheets. Bake an additional 4 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the pretzels from the oven and brush generously with melted butter.
We made 3 different flavors…
~ Plain ~
salted and buttered
dip – yellow mustard
~ Italian ~
salted, buttered, sprinkled with Italian seasoning, grated Parmesan cheese and garlic powder
dip – warm marinara sauce
~ Churro ~
salted, buttered, sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar
dip – dark chocolate syrup
~Recipe by Melissa~

~ Ice Tea ~

Cinnamon-Spiced Iced Tea
Serves: 6

  • 8 cups filtered water
  • 2 (1-inch) cinnamon sticks
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 large or family sized black tea bags
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 1 orange, sliced into 6 slices (optional)
  • Cinnamon sticks for garnish (optional)
  • Ice for serving
  1. Place the water, cinnamon sticks, and sugar in a large saucepan and place over high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes to allow the cinnamon sticks to release their flavor.
  2. Remove the water from heat, add the tea bags, cover, and allow to steep for 5 minutes. Remove the tea bags and discard.
  3. Pour the tea mixture into a 2-quart pitcher and stir in the orange and lemon juice.
  4. Chill the tea in the refrigerator until cold, about 2 hours.
  5. Pour over ice, garnish with orange slices and cinnamon sticks if desired, then serve.
  6. Recipe by: Day Dream Kitchen.Cinnamon-Spiced Iced Tea

Thursday, May 2, 2013

~Cucumber Lemonade | Summer Drinks Recipes~

Cucumber Lemonade | Summer Drinks Recipes

We all make normal lemonade but ever thought of adding cucumber to it? If no then try it now, the drink is so refreshing that if you try...

We all make normal lemonade but ever thought of adding cucumber to it? If no then try it now, the drink is so refreshing that if you try once you will be hooked to it.  I drink this glass after glass in hot summer days and relish it, though I always don't add sugar, some times I just add salt and enjoy it more so option is yours enjoy both sweet and salt version of this drink.  As any drink we make variations in this one too add honey if you prefer, add basil or mint leaves for that extra flavor.

Add soda to make it a perfect party drink ~ endless options here to try.  You can make these kind of drinking in large quantity keep in fridge and relish the whole day.  This lemonade is always a great way to add cucumber in our diet, do you know cucumbers are good source of Vitamin B?

Cucumber also helps to hydrate body and replenishes daily vitamins, relieves bad breath (Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds, the phytochemcials will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.), aids in digestion among other things.  So plenty of reason for your to add cucumber in your diet and how easy can be than to make this cucumber lemonade right?  So go ahead and try this out.

Cucumber Lemonade Recipe

Prep Time:
Total Time:
Serves: 5-6


Large Cucumber - 1

Lemon Juice - 1/2 Cup [or to taste]
Lemon Zest - 1 tsp [or of 1 small lemon]
Sugar - 3/4 Cup [or honey to taste]
Water - 6 Cups
Salt - 3/4 tsp [optional]
Ice Cubes - Few

1. Wash well and peel cucumber, make few large slices and keep aside for garnishing. (check my cucumber sandwich post on how to do it)
2. Chop cucumber (if too many seeds remove seeds), add 2 cups of water in blender with cucumber pieces, sugar.

3.  Blend for 3-4 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Sieve drink  and add remaining water in a large bowl.

4. Add salt, lemon juice, ice cubes, lemon zest and stir well to combine. Sieve again if preferred.

5. Pour in serving glasses add more ice cubes if required or chill and serve, garnish cucumber slice or lemon wedges.
 ~ To garnish glass like below picture first add ice cubes in a glass and then keep cucumber slice and twist it and pour drink, lemonade in this case.  Ice cubes will hold the cucumber slice in place, in a large jar cucumber slice will float.

Enjoy this easy and different cucumber lemonade, add a snack along to make a perfect breakfast or evening snack time drink, good for kids in any case.

Have a nice day ~~

Indian Khana: Cucumber Lemonade | Summer Drinks Recipes:

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Say Alhamdullilah

Whatever happens is by the Will of Allah, whether it be good or bad. Sometimes we forget Allah when it comes to happy moments, but immediately turn to Him for the bad. We should always be thanking Allah (SWT) for His infinite blessings, even in the tough times. He still gives and gives and we don’t even ask. The mercy of our Lord is beyond.. Subhna’Allah. “Its better a calamity that turns you to Allah, than a blessing that makes you forget Allah”
Always say Alhamdulillah for everything….