Spice Spoon in the Adriatic Times Magazine

Hello, lovelies – This summer, we travelled to Croatia for a family holiday. We flew into Split, and then took the ferry to spend the week on the tiny and beautiful island of Vis. I was interviewed by the Adriatic Times, a Croatian magazine, about our trip there. I hope you enjoy reading it.

Here is the hi-res version.  Happy Wednesday, shayma x

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Spice Spoon in GT Magazine October 1-15 Issue

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Hello, everyone – I was featured in Pakistan’s GT Magazine – the link to full interview is here.

Thanks so much for reading! Buon Weekend x

Plum Spoon Cake in the Pakistani Manner

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Here it is – the recipe I promised all of you over on my Instagram page, for your Canadian Thanksgiving table this weekend – my Plum Spoon Cake. This cake is moist and reminds me of a steamed pudding; you’ll want to eat this straight out of the oven with some vanilla bean ice cream, or dollops of crème fraîche.

We have had some gorgeous Italian plums in the farmers’ markets this year, so I wanted to create a warm dessert with these sweet and tart gems. I got the idea from Dana Wootton, a California-based cook I greatly admire – she recently made a blueberry dessert, which was based on melting butter in the pan and then pouring a simple batter on top of blueberries before baking them. That’s the sort of dessert I want to have in my repertoire, I said to myself. So off I went, with Italian plums in tow.

I had just bought some almond flour (for this recipe, I used unblanched almond flour – you’ll recall I used blanched almond flour for my Rose Ring Cake), and coconut sugar, so that’s what I decided to use as the basis for this recipe. Coconut sugar is lovely for baking, as it gives cakes a subtle burnt caramel flavour – and the fragrance  pairs beautifully with cardamom, which all of you know, for a Pakistani like myself, is the equivalent of vanilla in cakes.

You will have to halve the plums, but other than that, there isn’t much work to be done. I hope all of you enjoy making this dessert this long weekend.

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Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

You will need a 23cm/9-inch pie dish

Ingredients:
*10-12 Italian plums
*50g unsalted butter
*120g coconut sugar
*75g almond flour (made with unblanched almonds)
*50g all-purpose flour
*1 tsp baking powder
*1/2 tsp cardamom powder
*generous pinch of sea salt
*2 eggs
*230ml full-fat milk (a little less than a cup)
*Icing sugar
*Almond flakes

Preparation:
*Preheat oven to 180C.
*Slice 10-12 purple plums lengthwise, into halves. Discard seeds. Set aside.
*Place butter in the pie dish. Heat in oven until butter melts and starts to bubble, about 10-12 minutes.
*Remove from oven; arrange the plum slices, cut side facing down, in a circular pattern. Start from the outside, working your way into the dish, (be careful not to touch the hot butter with your fingers).
*In a large bowl, stir the dry ingredients (coconut sugar, almond meal, flour, baking powder, cardamom powder and salt) together. Use a wooden spoon to gently create a well in the bowl.
*Whisk together the eggs and milk in a separate bowl.
*Pour the wet mixture (eggs and milk) into the well. Slowly start to mix the wet mixture into the dry ingredients. Mix till combined and a smooth batter is formed.
*Pour the batter over the plums, do not stir or touch. Place in the oven for 35 minutes.
*Adorn with a dusting of icing sugar and almond flakes.
*Enjoy warm, with ice-cream, or crème fraîche.

My Globe and Mail Article – Naomi Duguid’s Taste of Persia

Hello, everyone. Wishing you all a Happy Monday! I hope you all had a wonderful summer. Lots of new things are happening in the Spice Spoon kitchen – there will be some easy and new recipes up on the blog soon.

I recently wrote a piece for the Globe and Mail on Naomi Duguid and her new book, ‘Taste of Persia’. I had the honour to cook and eat with Naomi Duguid, while we talked about her travels through this fascinating region of the world, and the people she met along the way. I have a personal interest in this region, not only because of my Persian roots, but also because my father was posted to Armenia (for the World Bank), and I visited him there a few times. I have nothing but beautiful memories of my time in that region of the world. I hope to go back one day, but for now, Naomi’s book is feeding my nostalgia.

Here is the link to the article. Thank you for reading it – it’s a long read!

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I also tested a few recipes from ‘Taste of Persia’; here are the ‘Stuffed Vegetables’ I made. Since tomatoes are quite tender to start with (compared to the the bell pepper, zucchini or aubergine – which Naomi suggests we use in the recipe), I only added a little bit of boiling water to the bottom of my pan; you won’t need much. We still have tomatoes in the markets (they’re disappearing fast) – so make this dish as quickly as you can! The stuffed tomatoes are gorgeous with some strained yoghurt and fresh herbs.

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I have the put the steps to this recipe up on my Instagram Stories – it’s only up for 24 hours, so you’ll have to have a look fairly soon. Have any of you been using Instagram Stories? I love using it to share recipes with all of you. Catch me there, and thank you for visiting! (You can find the recipe here.)

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