A well earned day off!

Mr. Mazhar is away for business for the day and so I am taking some much needed time-out from the kitchen! To start things off: a fresh look for my blog! I really loved the previous look of it but this theme appealed to me because I love to photograph the food I cook and many of my family and friends have said that my pictures look great. So this theme allows me to fulfil two of my passions – photography and cooking.

I have to say that as reluctant as I was to cook during my early years it is something I quite enjoy now. Maybe it’s part of growing up and maybe it’s because there are so many new things for me to try. But in all honesty it does get a little monotonous from time to time. The other thing is that being the perfectionist that I am I tend to overthink my daily menu and don’t even get me started on a party menu. I think about it for days before the event, I dream about it, I keep going over it in my head at least 20 times a day. I plan the menu, check out what ingredients need to be bought and what are available in my pantry, then I keep obsessing over it till the day of the party. So at the end of the day I am sooooooooooo exhausted mentally! Mazhar gets a little upset with me for working myself into such a frenzy and he does his part to help out around the house so that I can concentrate on cooking.

In between the cooking spurts I like to do up my table nicely too. I always get a color theme into my table setting. My dining ware and serve ware are mostly white so I get to play around with different coloured tablecloths and napkins. I find it to be the easiest way to give every party a new and refreshed look. I have plain coloured tablecloths, printed ones, embroidered ones and textured ones. Here in the UAE you can find the most amazing variety of napkins in colours and patterns and designs. I choose pretty and pink with polka dots and florals when my niece is coming over. She is 4 years and currently loves pink and purple. For Mazhar’s office colleagues I go with golden with hints of black and grey – very sophisticated. For family and friends I have tried blue florals and coral geometrics for light lunches and red and beige butterflies for formal dinners. I recently bought a new pack of napkins and can’t wait to try them out.

I also try and make an effort to plan my party meals around a cuisine. I have done an Italian themed party with risotto, penne pasta with spicy chicken, spaghetti and meatballs, roasted chicken with olives and vegetables and tiramisu for dessert. I tried Lebanese cuisine with sumac grilled whole chicken, shawarma spiced chicken, hummus, fattoush, baba ganoush and falafel (ok the falafel were store bought ;)). I have planned out a Mexican menu and a Chinese menu but haven’t executed them yet. Shouldn’t be too long now as we are almost always having people over. Alhamdulillah.

Now I believe it’s time for a break from all things Mazhar and cooking related 🙂 Hope you have a great day too! Thanks for reading.

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9 Comments Add yours

  1. iyeeji says:

    …I am suddenly flippantly in love with napkins! And quit teasing me with details about the menu – I shall be forced to hop skip and jump over to your place! And if I may – I adore how you write – zero flamboyancy and utterly elegant!

    1. Nida Sami says:

      Thank you so much for your comment. And you are most certainly welcome to come on over anytime. I’ll cook up a storm for you, In Shaa Allah.

  2. hynasami3 says:

    So glad to have my day begin with your blog posts again! It’s like having a refreshing glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. Pls don’t stop and leave us thirsty for more 🙂

    1. Nida Sami says:

      Am really hoping to keep this up too. In Shaa Allah

  3. sabzee says:

    Salams! Wow nida! I’m still reluctant to cook (though cooking for 2 was easier than cooking for 6 with widely different palates!) but I’m wondering if napkins and themed meals might encourage me…. Lovely reading ur blog! Hope all in well:) saba

    1. Nida Sami says:

      Walaikum salaam. These little things help me get out of the monotony of biryani and qorma all the time. Napkins really are just the cheapest way to make every meal new. I seem to be obessesed with them. There are literally too many options available here. It’s hard to pick just one sometimes, but I try ;). Thanks for liking the blog and do keep coming back.

  4. Aliya Khan says:

    Love love love your blog 🙂 Keep new recipes coming!

    1. Nida Sami says:

      Thanks so much. I’m really hoping to stick it out! Please remember me in your prayers.

  5. Aliya Khan says:

    Tell Mr. Mazhar he is a very lucky guy!
    I am going to make sure he never meets my husband 🙂

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