Food

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The Best Chili You’ve Ever Had!

Today I’m going to be sharing one of my favorite recipes ever, chili! For me, eating chili is probably the best part of winter. I grew up eating it only at my aunt’s house (my mom mostly made Pakistani food at home) which was one of the few non-Pakistani dishes I enjoyed back then. As I’ve grown into an adult (I think), and have started cooking more and more, I never really wanted to learn how to make this dish only because I was scared I couldn’t make it as good as I remember tasting it. Last year, I decided that was a stupid reason not to make something so I started looking up recipes. I found one that seemed to be a good base to start on allrecipes.com. If you click here you’ll see the original. However, here is my version: Ingredients: -2 lb ground beef -2 (29 ounce) cans tomato sauce -2 (15 ounce) cans…

Frederick, Maryland

Another city that I went to over the summer was Frederick, Maryland. While living in Maryland I had gone here only a handful of times to visit friends at their homes but never knew it was such a poppin’ town! I always thought it was farmland for some reason (mostly because one of the friends I visited actually lived on a farm). I guess when you are young you see the world in a different way. That same friend told me Frederick downtown is becoming a very popular place so I thought okay, let’s check it out with my new adult eyes! I parked next to Baker Park which is what we walked around in first before heading into downtown. The park was really cute and at this angle had a European look to it. After strolling around in the park and working up an appetite, it was time to…

Creamy Pesto Pasta With Chicken & Roasted Tomatoes

Time for another recipe! This one’s a pasta dish that I came up with by combining a few ones that I read online. A few weeks ago I made basil pesto which I had frozen because I made a lot and so I wanted to incorporate that in the pasta. I also wanted to include tomatoes in it because my dad grows a lot of vegetables in our backyard and if you know anything about growing tomatoes, they always grow in abundance and so I’m always looking at different ways to use them. I didn’t want to make this pasta taste like a salad because pesto pastas that I have eaten in the past are salad-y tasting and served cold. And although, this tastes great cold, it tastes even better when it’s warm and freshly made! Oh, and by the way, when adding chicken to pasta, sometimes I take a…

New York City in 2 Days – Part 2

Since we did so much the day before, it was so hard to wake up on day 2! But knowing that we had a day ahead of more fun, we managed to get up and start the day at 9 AM! ANSEL DOMINIQUE BAKERY – CRONUT We got ready and went straight to Ansel Dominique Bakery in SoHo to find ourselves the much talked about cronut. Since we got there at 10, I thought we wouldn’t have made it in time to get one because they only make a certain amount each day and once they are out, they are out. We got lucky because we managed to get two, one for each of us to try! We excitedly bought them and headed out to their back patio which was so cute! I loved the neutral color choices with the pop of yellow. It was very Parisian. Even the packaging of…

Dearborn, Michigan

Our final stop on this reunion weekend was Dearborn. My friend had been talking about an amazing place to get kababs from and it only seem fit that we go! So this place is located in a butcher shop. It’s called Dearborn Meat Market. Basically, they sell meat in the front and then in the back there is a small room in which they BBQ kababs! So you know you’re getting fresh ingredients! Being amateurs, we ordered like 2 or 3 orders. But apparently that’s not enough, even for three people. I don’t remember how many orders we got, but here is a picture of all the kababs! And of course, there is also hummus and tabouleh! Yea…it was pretty great. And even though we left feeling satisfied, we couldn’t leave Michigan without having custard because apparently it’s a thing there. And so, we went to The Custard Hut. Okay,…

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Do you guys have friends that you’ve been friends with most of your life? The kind of friends that no matter how long you’ve been apart or how long you haven’t spoken to, you still pick up right where you left off? I know I’ve said it before and I’m going to say it again, I am so fortunate and blessed to have many of these kinds of friends. The reason why I’m talking about friends and friendship is because recently, I had the opportunity to hang out with three such friends. All four of us grew up together in Maryland and we hadn’t been in the same place together in a really long time. I moved away to California, and eventually,two of them got married and also moved away to different states. So, in April, we decided we needed to change our lack of hanging out and have a mini reunion! This…

Taste of Chicago 2016 Review

Yesterday, I went to the Taste of Chicago and it felt necessary to share my experience with you this morning rather than Monday morning in case someone out there is debating whether they should go or not and are dying to know what I thought about it. For those that don’t know, It’s a food festival where various local restaurants and food vendors set up booths so people can come and sample some of their popular dishes. Basically, a foodie’s heaven! How it works is, once you are in, you buy tickets at the gate which ends up being your “money” to purchase the food. For 12 tickets it’s $8.50 which I thought was pretty reasonable. The cool thing is that most of the vendors had sample size portions for 3-5 tickets so you can try more than one place and not feeling like you are going to explode. I went with a friend so…

Reading Terminal Market – Philadelphia, PA

I spent a day in Philadelphia last summer with a friend and one of the things to do on our list was to have lunch at the Reading Terminal Market. It has so many options much like the Milwaukee Public Market that I told you all about last week. I like going to places like these because there are tons of options for you to choose from all in one place. The only negative about it is that there’s too many that you get confused! However, I did know that we obviously had to have a Philly Cheesesteak! We decided to get it from Carmen’s Famous Italian Hoagies and Cheesesteaks. There was another place we wanted to try them from but they ran out of hoagies! So, while my friend waited in line for the cheesesteaks, I, of course had to go to another restaurant too. I went to Valley Shepherd Creamery and Meltkraft Grilled Cheese and got a grilled cheese…

Milwaukee Public Market – Milwaukee, WI

While in Milwaukee, Wisconsin last summer, I went to the Milwaukee Public Market. On my internet search, it came up as one of the top places to visit there. It’s basically a foodie’s heaven because there are multiple food vendors in one building and so you have all these options to pick from to have your meal. We arrived at lunch time so it was a bit crowded and we had to wait some time to get food. But let me tell you, the wait was well worth it! As excited as I was, I was also freaking out because I wanted to try everything but obviously my stomach wouldn’t allow that. Which reminds me of the time when one of my friends asked me if I could have any super power what would it be? She’s actually asked me this a few times on different occasions. And my usual answer was to be…

Valpo Velvet – Valparaiso, IN

Continuing with the exploring Indiana theme, it’s time to tell you about Valpo Velvet. When I was looking up things to see, do and eat in Valparaiso, Indiana, I kept coming across Valpo Velvet. It’s an ice cream shoppe! And such a historic one as well. They’ve been making ice cream in this location since 1947. And what’s great is that they continue to make all their products from scratch! The picture of the ice cream featured above may not look as exciting but the flavor definitely was. There are about 50 different flavors of ice creams, sherbet, frozen yogurt, etc. to choose from and I got Salted Caramel. It’s one of my all time favorite flavors of ice cream along with cookies and cream. It was delicious! I really liked the inside of this shoppe as well, it was really cute. In particular, I enjoyed all the colorful chairs, almost each…

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