Nutty,  crunchy, slightly floral and not overly sweet. An irresistible combination that makes stopping at just one of these Babouches or blighate nearly impossible!

For the July Muslim food bloggers challenge, we were asked to make a recipe in which honey is one of the key players in terms of flavor. I have already missed the past 2 MFB challenges and was determined not to miss this one!
At first I was going to make a kale salad with a honey mustard dressing (my go to lunch lately in our 44 C summer) but the bag of sesame seeds that my mum sent me a few months ago to make karakeesh was never put to good use and we’re leaving for a vacation in three weeks, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity to use it up.

Babouches a honey and sesame dessert from morocco.jpg

Since I spend most of the year complaining about the intolerable heat here in the UAE,it would only be fair to share the precious few days of good weather that we’re having at the moment.
I am in love with anything and everything that is even remotely winter-ish :

Beautiful clouds that the sun enjoys setting on fire every morning!
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The cold morning breeze that finally justifies owning a jacket in the UAE!

Cloud formations that the kids and I spend the way to school weaving stories about, imaginary creatures, giant elephants(yes my son is still in love with elephants) and of course, dragons!
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pomegranates by chef in disguise.jpg

Today’s quinoa salad is quick and easy. It is actually one of my go to lunches lately  topped with some grilled chicken or shrimp. The recipe is actually a copycat recipe for a salad we love at one of the local restaurants. The combination of colors, textures and flavors is so refreshing!

chickpea and vegetables quinoa salad.jpg

This Turkish dip happens to be one of my all time favorite mezza, right after homemade hummus! It is smoky , packs a real flavor punch with layers of  herbs, nutty walnuts, sweetness from the sundried tomatoes and smokiness from the pepper. I love this on pita bread or with pita chips, as a dip with baby carrots or cucumbers, it is heavenly with lavash crackers, you can also use it as a topping for pizza or manakeesh.

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This spread plays on the same flavor notes as Muhammara but the flavors here are more intense because there is no bread crumbs to dilute them . I also love the refreshing herb and spice notes in this Turkish spread that are missing or less pronounced in Muhammara