A jewel in Karachi’s crown – Empress Market


Childhood trips to Empress Market were anything but pleasant. To a 10 year old spending Sunday morning in a huge bustling bazaar with a cocktail of aromatics from fresh produce was not a treat. I would forcefully accompany my grandmother or mother, reluctantly agree with bribes of a treat of chickee sweets (sesame jaggery brittle) or fresh… 

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Guest post by Ceri Jones – Courgette Sweet Aaloo


I love the take of this healthy, quick and inventive recipe by my friend Ceri, who is a natural chef in London – her recipes can be found on her blog Natural Kitchen Adventures which focuses on whole foods, paleo and gluten-free recipes, since 2011. Ceri Jones made her passion for wholesome food her living by… 

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5 ways with Star Anise, my favourite spice

Photo by Joanna Yee

That haunting exotic aroma, it’s perfection in shape and form, begs to be savoured. Many are fraught with dispair due its strong essence and afraid to use it, here are some simple ways to incorporate this stunning spice in every day cooking…To me the heady welcome scent of autumn! Star anise is also known as… 

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Fragrant Saffron & nut biryani


The cool winter sea breeze of Karachi in December brought a very different feeling with it. It was welcomed after a long hot, intolerant summer. Suddenly the streets would be buzzing with happy folk, in their shawls and the men in their warm hand-woven Peshawari topi’s  longing for the first touch of winter to pull out… 

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Semolina ladoo sweets with coconut and Arabic gum


As dreams start finding reality, I am humbled to the beginnings of my knowledge and thankful for my un-satiated desire to learn. Food and it’s celebration was a gift I grew up with. A precious joy that was handed down to me by my two grandmothers and most importantly, my mother. All my best memories of… 

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Spiced Nectarines with lemon and cardamom Cream


This dessert is inspired by a Pakistani/Hyderabadi dessert called Khubani ka Meetha, traditionally made with dried Hunza apricots, topped with fresh buffalo cream and apricot kernels. This version of mine uses lightly spiced, ripe Italian nectarines, which I top with a lemon- and cardamom-scented coconut cream and pan toasted almonds. To me, this is the best celebration of a… 

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Carrot Halva with pistachios – Anticipation & the joy of Eid


This carrot halva recipe was the winning recipe for  The Guardian COOK supplement 14 Sept 2013, UK picked by Felicity Cloake  The 29th Roza (fast). A night of  such mixed emotions. Anticipation, excitement and joy all rolled into one. The much awaited ‘siren‘ after the sighting of the moon – knowing that it’s Eid tomorrow, was filled… 

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Spiced mango fruit leather – Sweet summer memories and new inspirations


Much awaited mango trees laden with tiny sour green ‘kayris’ (raw mango) would call to me during March to May every year, I would get a bitter telling off from my grandmother when I sneakily stole these tiny piquant bursts of flavour as she waited expectantly for them come to full fruiting glory – As… 

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Afghani Kabuli lamb pullao with caramelised carrots, raisins and pistachios


  Wholesome, simple and fragrant is this dish – while it steams away in your kitchen, your home will be enveloped with the delectable aroma of whole garam masala and the soothing and nurturing earthy smell of rice, while the sweet yet sour crunchy carrots and tangy black currants will add a unique flavour to… 

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Kalay Chanay – Black chickpeas tossed in white poppy seeds, tamarind and red onions


  Those endless moments of loss – Nights dark with the struggle of separation from the one you loved who has left this world forever.. I have felt those moments many more times in my life than I hoped, not just by the loss of close family or friends, but drastic changes in my life,… 

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