Penne Pasta With Meat Sauce

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Out of every 10 people, at least 15 love eating pasta. (My math isn’t that weak, I totally made that up, thank you) The day I made this pasta, two of my uncles came to visit us. My mom asked me if I wanted to serve this dish too and I just couldn’t resist showing off a tad bit (Hey, who doesn’t like appreciation?) And so, when they ate their first bite, they were both pretty impressed. Huhu, scored!

Anyways, one of my uncles commented, “This is a pretty simple recipe, you just added pasta to already cooked meat from the last night or something,” and that was enough. I said, “Hello? I spent like 15 minutes making this meat sauce… how could you?” And then I realized he was ONLY kidding. Bad jokes, ugh!

Well honestly, it is a pretty simple and finger licking good recipe. If you love herbs and spices like I do, you’ll definitely give this a try and show off your cooking skills, like I did.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup penne pasta
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 5 chopped garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning (available in the markets)
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp parsley
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 pound minced beef (Add garlic/ginger paste, pinch of salt, chili powder prior to cooking)

Instructions:

  • Boil the pasta according to the instructions. Drain and set aside.
  • In a large skillet heat the oil. Add the Italian seasoning, chopped onion and red pepper flakes and fry until the onion has softened.
  • Add chopped garlic, salt and pepper and cook until you smell the aroma of garlic. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Heat a pan and cook the beef until it is brown.
  • Add the cooked meat to the pan with the seasoning.
  • Add the sugar and tomato paste and cook for another 15 minutes.
  • Now it’s time to adjust the seasonings of your sauce. You can increase the amount of tomato paste if you find it a little dry. Add salt and pepper. Add more sugar if you find it a bit too sour.
  • Finally add the pasta and sprinkle with parsley.

Do try this recipe and let me know if you liked it or not. I love feedback, yo!

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Vinegar/Onion Flavored Chips and KFC Style Chicken Wings

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                                                        Mouthwatering… Isn’t it?

One fine day, I WAS DYING TO EAT KFC CHICKEN and I had no idea how to sate these random intense hunger cravings. (Like sheesh, give me a break tummy!)

But seriously, at that moment I thought I definitely needed to learn how to cook KFC style chicken pieces myself because one thing I was sure about: if I got my hands on that perfect recipe, I could stop worrying my a** over being broke and not being able to quieten the growling hunger.

And so my hunt for the recipe began.

It wasn’t much of a hunt to be honest, and after a bit of research, I finally got the hang of it. Just a few special ingredients and you’ve cooked for yourself, exactly the same chicken, ABSOLUTELY FREE!

And now let me tell you why I cooked these vinegar and onion chips.

Because I LOVE CHIPS! Who doesn’t, for God’s sake! I love making flavored chips and I wanted to try it the moment I bought “a certain ingredient.” *winks*

Okay, enough of the background stories. Let’s get back to food business, shall we?

Ingredients for KFC Chicken:

  • 8 chicken wings (cleaned & washed)
  • 50 gm all purpose flour
  • 50 gm bread crumbs
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 2 tbsp curd
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 green chili (cut these into the tiniest pieces possible)
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 1 tsp dried basil leaves
  • 1 tsp oregano (powdered)
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)

Instructions:

  • Wash the chicken and let the water drain from it.
  • In a medium sized bowl, mix curd, egg, 1/2 tsp chili powder and salt.
  • Marinate the chicken wings in this mixture for 4 to 5 hours.
  • In a another large bowl, add the flour, green chili, pepper, basil leaves, oregano, onion powder, ginger powder, garlic powder and the rest of the chili powder.
  • Cover the chicken wings well with this spicy mix and then with the bread crumbs.
  • In a large frying pan, add enough oil to grease the base. I prefer not to deep fry it and rather just fry it. If you want to deep fry the chicken, adjust the amount of oil.
  • Fry the chicken until it is crispy and golden brown.
  • EAT IT !!!

NOOOO WAIT.

Let’s cook the chips now. How can you even THINK of enjoying this delicious chicken without chips? Just hide the chicken somewhere for a while; the fragrance is sure to attract a lot of people. Huhu.

Ingredients for Vinegar/Onion flavored Chips:

  • Potatoes (Duh!)
  • Vinegar
  • Onion powder (this is the ingredient I was winking about, remember? No? Fish memory!)
  • Salt

Instructions:

  • Slice the potatoes into the thinnest round shape possible. It is pretty easy to do if you use a chopping board and a sharp knife (just like your tongue, heh!) You can keep the skin if you want.
  • In a large frying pan, heat oil. Like I said before, I prefer using the least amount of oil and it does no harm to the dish being cooked, trust me.
  • Fry the potatoes till they are golden brown.
  • Add the salt, vinegar and onion powder seasoning to the chips right after you take them out on a paper to dry. That way, the flavor will be absorbed.
  • What are you waiting for? EEEAAAAATTTT!!!

This is probably the best weather to try out these dishes. Dryness makes it more crunchy. Also, I have learned from my experience that garlic, onion and ginger powder are some ingredients you should always have in your kitchen. You can add them to ANYTHING for an excellent flavor.

Please do let me know when you try out these recipes. I love knowing if you enjoyed them or you wanted to push me down a cliff for wasting your time. Haha.

 

Be a “real friend”, get a “real friend”

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Most of the people you come across nowadays are often whining about monetary issues, bosses, families and what not. This is all usual. We can expect ‘absurdities’ when it comes to these things. But the most recent grumblings which compelled me to compose this blog were “I don’t have any real friends” or “Only if I had some good friends…”

First of all, everybody has a friend. Full stop. There should be zero arguments about this. There is no question that you can survive in this drastic world without somebody by your side. This friend might be your sibling, a neighbor, someone from your institute, a colleague or some e-friend.

Secondly, who exactly do you consider your ‘real friend’? Someone who cooks for you daily? Someone who buys expensive gifts on your birthday? Someone who plans midnight surprises on your birthday? Someone who helps you dispose off a body of a person you just murdered?

If the answer to any one (or, to my utter horror, all) of the above questions is affirmative, then you, my dear, are entirely at fault. You might be just shoving your real friends away by being selfish or expecting a lot, I repeat, ‘a lot’.

Before I say anything on my own, let’s see what lessons Hazrat Ali (A.S) has taught us regarding friends:

1
“A true friend is one who upon seeing a fault gives you advice and who defends you in your absence.”

No doubt!

11
“Ask your heart about the condition of friendship, because it is such a witness that does not accept a bribe.”

So beautifully stated, isn’t it?

You see guys, you can’t have everything you wish for. You can’t expect to have a superbly intelligent nerd who helps you to secure at least a B in every test by constantly coaxing you for group studies, as your friend and at the same time expect him/her to go with you for a game five times a week or shopping (whatever suits the gender). You need to realize that “perfect personalities don’t exist, at all.”

Following are some points which can a) make you a good friend for others & b) help you realize who your true friends are. Chances are that they might just be lurking around you and you only need a nudge from me to see them.

  • Simply, lower your expectations, for a start.
  • Don’t be materialistic, it’s obviously not an attractive personality trait.
  • Try to cherish your moments with your buddy by having a good laugh, a good gossip or talking about some serious issues concerning your/their life.
  • Be a good listener as well as a good speaker. Mutual interests are extremely necessary to be good friends with someone.
  • Once in a while, engage in a talk that concerns families. The more you talk about people close to your friend, the more he/she will trust you. And obviously, vice versa.
  • Presents are important, yes, but not as effective as sweet and sincere words. Your gifts should never indicate that you’re impressing or flaunting neither they should show that you’re gifting grudgingly. But a sincere wish, will too, go a long way. It’ll be etched in their minds.
  • While we’re discussing wishes another important point to keep in mind is to make sure you convince them that you’re genuinely concerned about their happiness and life.
  • Never compare your own riches or money with your friend. NEVER.
  • Be sincerely happy at their achievements.
  • Relationships can distance you from your friends. If this is the case, do let them know you want to help them and then give your friend the desired space. If he/she comes to you, great! If not, he/she never did consider you a friend.
  • Occasionally, sharing personal secrets is healthy for your friendship.
  • Avoid backbiting. Entirely. This cracks the basis of trust.
  • Help them in their time of need. The thing is, there might come a point in your life when either of you may not be available for each other at the time of need. No worries, if the friendship is strong, you will find at least a moment to inquire about them through a simple phone call. Even that is enough.
  • Friendship is not about going to lavish restaurants for lunches. It’s about making your own lunch and watching a badass movie in your room together. (Oh and washing dishes later).
  • Better is, not to discuss your friendship matters with strangers.
  • Your real friend won’t go on 3 days in a row without talking you. Bear that in mind!

Your friend won’t have a tattoo on their forehead to prove to you that he/she is your friend. There is no test for proving the strength of friendship. It depends on your own notions. You’ll just feel a connection.

Friends are necessary. Your parents and siblings will not be around forever. Relatives, are a totally different story. During your rough times, when even your closest cousins might scarper, only your real friends shall be there. Make sure you cherish your friends, be a good companion and find good companions for your own selves.

Cheers!

Bloggers Award Nomination

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Hey guys and girls.

So this amazing lady, http://randombytesfromlife.wordpress.com/ nominated me for the Liebster Bloggers Award, for which I’m heartily thankful to her. I’m actually new here, joined WordPress in December 2014. I find this site to be an amazing platform to share my thoughts with you people. I greatly thank YOU guys for taking out precious moments from your busy lives and reading my blog. It is a real encouragement and I always appreciate positive criticism.

These are the answers to the questions asked:

  • Why do you love blogging? I like blogging because it is one of the most effective ways of delivering your thoughts to people all around the world. I can write a lot openly, without any hesitation and with complete consistency. Also, I love writing. It is my passion.
  • What is your primary job? I have recently finished my bachelors in Biomedical Engineering with the grace of Almighty Allah, Alhamdulillah.  
  • Have you gotten the benefits from blogging? If yes, please mention 2 of them! I got peace of mind, to be very honest. I love when I pour out all my thoughts in words and it gives me a great pleasure. Secondly, I get to read beautiful writings here from other gems, whose words have the strength to shine your day.
  • What is your favorite place in your country that you have visited? I can’t say much as I’ve only ever visited Islamabad, Abbottabad and Murree and thus I don’t really qualify to answer this question, as yet.
  • Have you ever visited Pakistan? I have lived in Pakistan all my life. Karachi is my city.
  • What is your favorite past time activity? Reading and writing, mostly. Apart from that, I am an avid social networking fan.
  • How do you get the ideas for your blog? It can be anything that catches my attention or any idea that floats randomly and words start to fabricate on their own. It can be something that I observed while on the road or something that I observed on television or something that I experienced in the past, etc.
  • Do you like sport? Which sport do you like? I only like playing badminton, that’s all. Not a sports fan.
  • What place (city in this world) you wish to visit in the future (Insha’Allah)? Why? It’s my desire to visit Paris, the city of love.
  • What is your own language? Urdu is my mother tongue.
  • Do you feel hurt, if someone speaks very badly to you? Would you like to forgive him/her for Allah’s pleasure? Jazak Allah! Yes I do get hurt, but it is momentary. Mostly, I tend to tune out such people. Yes, I usually forgive them. I don’t like to keep grudges, but I never ever forget.

I’ve nominated the following people for this award:

http://unchargedion.wordpress.com/

http://marymanwar.wordpress.com/

https://badgluteus.wordpress.com/

http://khawajayy.wordpress.com/

https://haseebshah.wordpress.com/

http://piercingreticence.wordpress.com/

https://afrinabbas.wordpress.com/

Cheers! 🙂

Congratulations to all nominees, now answer these questions and follow the Liebster award rules mentioned below:

  1. Why do you love blogging?
  2. What is your primary job?
  3. Have you gotten the benefits from blogging? If yes, please mention 2 of them!
  4. What is your favorite place in your country that you have visited?
  5. Have you ever visited Pakistan?
  6. What is your favorite past time activity?
  7. How do you get the ideas for your blog?
  8. Do you like sport? Which sport do you like?
  9. What place (city in this world) you wish to visit in the future (Insha’Allah)? Why?
  10. What is your own language?
  11. Do you feel hurt, if someone speaks very badly to you? Would you like to forgive him/her for Allah’s pleasure? Jazak Allah!

Liebster Award Rules: 

1.Thank the person who gave you the Liebster Award nomination and link their blog to your post. DONE
2. Answer the 11 questions they asked you. DONE
3. Nominate 5- 11 bloggers for the award.  The bloggers must have 200 followers or fewer. DONE
4. Now Create 11 questions to ask your nominees. DONE
5. Make sure to let your nominees know you nominated them once you’ve posted about your Liebster Award. DOING NOW
Add the Liebster Award badge to your blog! DONE