Marhaba!

I’m Lara.

A wife, mum, and food activist who aims to inspire healthy living practices, blogs about helping other parents redefine parenthood.

On my blog you will find easy recipes that are simple so you and your family can create and eat delicious food at home, even if cooking isn’t your thing. You will also find some posts inspired by my kids Hana and Ayah and some of our activities out and about.

Everyone in a while you will see a review about a product or a restaurant that we’ve tried. YES, I do encourage all of you to cook at home and to identify the sources of your food, BUT THEN AGAIN, who am I kidding, people do dine out, you get invited, you go out with your friends or spouses for dinner, but you will notice that most reviews do not come from junk food or fast food restaurants.
Today, life is busy.

Between work, kids, managing the house, school, play dates, home works, and extracurricular activities, making a meal could be a hassle, and we end up relying on feeding our families more junk and food out of a box that we anticipate.
I am on a missing for a healthier life style, and this include some seriously planting, and prepping meals from farm to table,

I’m thrilled that we’ve connected, thanks for stopping by my blog. Don’t be a stranger and come back frequently.

THE CHEF

Cook. Eat. Repeat.

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Zucchini or Cauliflower Fritters

Crispy on the outside, and moist but not soggy on the inside. This is a family favorite made by my mom, so whenever you are making food using stuffed zucchini you can always use the inner flesh to make a batch, or just go ahead and make one…

Mozzarella Cheese Rolls

You can't go wrong with these Mozzarella Cheese Rolls with marinara sauce! Serve hot, they'll be gone in a matter of seconds. Cheese Rolls Ingredients Spring Roll Sheets Mozzarella String Cheese Marinara Sauce Ingredients…

Sfeeha

Sfeeha or Sfiha depending on how you like to spell it is a very popular side dish in the LEVANT region. A pie-like dish served with various filling but traditionally meat. Now everyone is biased to their moms food for sure, but I can safely…

Veggie Vietnamese Rolls

Fresh Summer Veggie Rolls are perfect for the Spring, Summer, and anytime you want to enjoy the fresh deliciousness of veggies. Ingredients Rice paper 1 Cucumber Cut in half and lengthwise into smaller cuts 1 Carrot Cut in…

Vegetable Spring Rolls

I like my Spring Rolls to be minimal and full of flavor, so no noodles or poultry, just a few veggies packaged with nutrients and flavor. Ingredients 3 TBSP Sesame Oil 6 cups shredded cabbage 3 Cup peeled carrot, coarsely grated …
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Kubbeh Tarts

A twist on a classic Kubbeh, half baked, half fried! Those bite-size tarts take some effort to make but are worth every single bite ... Crust Ingredients 500 Grams of Veal Meat 1 KG of Fine White Bulgur 1 Onion Peeled and cut…

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Truffle Infused Alfredo Sauce

The luxurious flavors of truffles and cream transform everyday pasta into an elegant Italian-style dish—perfect for dinner parties or savory weeknight feasts. I found a truffle butter while grocery shopping this weekend and needless to say…
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Oven Baked Chicken Fajitas

Need a quick meal that's BURSTING with flavor? These oven-baked chicken fajitas are a quick, no-fuss method for making this healthy Mexican food any day in the week. Fajita Ingredients 2 large chicken breasts, finely sliced 1…

Beef Stroganoff

Ready in 30 minutes you cannot go wrong with this easy to make Beef Stroganoff! I’m surprised my two year old went for a second serving. Ingredients 500 grams’ baby veal meat cut into thin slices 3 TBSP Middle Eastern Buharat…
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Oven Baked Zaatar Chicken

On a day where I don’t feel like cooking, MAGGI® Mixes come to the rescue. Here is how I made this Zaatar Mix in an oven bag into a quick meal for my family Ingredients 1 package MAGGI® Zaatar Mix 4 chicken breasts (approximately…

Asian Honey Sesame Beef

It was one of those days where I didn't feel like cooking and wanted to make something in about 20 minutes! No regrets, the flavor was there, and the kitchen was clean. This one pan-Asian Honey Sesame Beef was gone in minutes... Ingredients …

Bukhari Rice

If you know me at all, you would know the rice isn’t my thing. I can go with no rice for weeks, it wouldn’t bother me; however, this dish has a soft spot in my heart. This Bukhari Rice (known in Arabic as Ruz al Bukhari) is a Saudi Arabian…

Pasta Salad

Perfect for summer cookouts, BBQs and potlucks! Ingredients 500 gram box of Fusilli Pasta 1 Green pepper diced into cubes 1 Large tomatoes diced into cubes 1 Red onion diced into cubes ¼ Cup Corn 2 Carrots diced into…

Fattoush

In the Middle East, this chopped salad is eaten at almost every meal,e specially in the summer over a BBQ. Check out my version with an interesting twist. Salad Ingredients 2 cups lettuce cut into bite size pieces 3 medium tomatoes…

Cobb Salad

A popular American dish, you could enjoy a cobb salad as a side dish or even a whole bowl as a main dish all to your self. Colorful and flavorful with lots of ingredients, this is how I enjoy mine. Ingredients: 2 Chicken Breasts…

Pomelo Salad

One of my favorite Armenian restaurants serves a delicious and mouth watering Pomelo Salad! It's Middle Eastern food with an Armenian influence, and it's delicious I could order one all to my self. One day I decided to do a spin off at home,…

Halloumi Salad

There is something about grilled vegetables that has me digging for second and even third helpings. Personally, I would only dig into a salad if it was bursting with flavors, and when I made this Halloumi Salad at home I was instantly in love…

Kani Salad

Kani Salad is a favorite among many, after all – most of us start our Sushi frenzy with a bowl of Kani Salad. Personally, I’m a Salmon kind of person, especially that I had Kani all through my pregnancy, so I’ve had it with crab since…

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Lahmeh Bi Bayd (Eggs & Meat)

Some have it for breakfast and others like it for dinner. During Ramadan this is a must have on our table, at least every other day. Ingredients 150 g veal 4 eggs 2 medium onions diced finely 1/2 TBSP Cinnamon 1/2 TBSP Sea…
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Easy Homemade Bagels

If you love Bagels, you’re going to love how easy and cheap to make this homemade recipe is. Try it and you’ll never go back to store-bought or frozen variety again. The recipe yields 10 medium sized bagels or 20 mini sized bagels, I used…
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Homemade Kaak

The journey of homemade Kaak started when my cousin Nana decided she was sick of the traditional Cheese platter and wanted something with an oriental twist, and with that came those miniature versions of our favorite toasted sesame kaak. Ingredients For…
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Homemade Saj Bread

Traditionally cooked over charcoals or wood fire on a large dome-like skillet called Saj. I have none but managed to get creative by cover the handles of my wok and turning it upside down to create the saj skillet. Don’t have a Wok? Don’t…
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Our Favorite Egg Recipes

We’re a family who loves EGGS! Seriously we go through a large carton every week. With that said we love eggs because we’re always alternating between recipes. I for one fancy up my eggs, poached eggs with hollandaise sauce anyone? But…

Avocado Baked Eggs

Talk about an Omega-3 powered breakfast! It may look like a fancy and hard to make breakfast, but trust me, it's easy to make, incredibly nutritious, and packed with healthy fatty acids and high proteins that your body will appreciate. Ingredients 2…

Tomato Soup with Basil

Ingredients 1 ½ KG tomatoes cut in half ¼ Cup olive oil 1 TBSP Salt 1 ½ TSP Black Pepper 2 Cups diced white onions (around 2 medium/large onions) 3 Garlic gloves minced 2 TBSP Butter 1 can Tomatoes with juice …

Cream of Broccoli Soup 

I am not a broccoli soup person, but my husband is. You can't go wrong with this super creamy texture. Ingredients 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter 1 medium onion, diced finely 1/4 cup all-purpose flour 4 cups chicken…

Cream of Mushroom Soup

hearty and warming soup and so good for a winter day; it has intensely earthy flavors, and is actually as good all year long. Ingredients 2 TBSP Butter 1 Small Onion diced finely 4 Cups Fresh Mushroom cut into slices 2…

Lentil Soup

A personal favorite during winter, and Ramadan, you can't go wrong with this Lentil Soup Lentil Soup Ingredients 1 TBSP Veg Oil 2 Cup Red Lentils 2 Large Potato diced finely 4 Carrots shredded 2 Large Onion 1 Liter …
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Slow Cooker Potato Soup

The yummiest loaded potato soup that is made right in your slow cooker. Warm up every day this winter with this heart warming soup. Ingredients 1 large onion chopped finely 2 stalks celery chopped 1 large carrot chopped 3-4 potatoes…

THE MOTHER

Having children just puts the whole world into perspective.

Our Favorite Books in Dec

My eldest Hana is attending Lubna’s Pre School (so sad it’s our last year there she will be off to KG next year!), every December they encourage parents to read to their children through a fun and engaging competition, mind you, they encourage…

The Working Mom’s Guide to Meal Planning

OK, so let’s get real, you know how hard it is to be a working mom and to cook every single day? Every month, every new year, I say 'this month is going to be different', THIS MONTH: I’M GOING TO COOK DAILY and serve fresh, homemade meals…

Fall Organization Hacks

Whether you have a house keeper or not, someone who comes once a week to clean, or you simply distribute chores to your family members, there are some things that only mom is diligent enough to do! This Fall I’m spending 20 minutes per…

Hawaiian Birthday Inspiration

A child’s first birthday is always special, especially the first child! When Hana turned one in 2016 we had a nice Hawaiian themes birthday in our garden. She wasn’t in school at the time, so we wanted to keep it simple, my friends were…

Visiting Istanbul with a Toddler 

As a mother of a baby (8 months now) and a 3-year-old toddler, one of the toughest decisions was to plan a vacation and act on it. Worried about not being able to provide nutritious food that is clean and age appropriate to my youngest Ayah,…

Kids and horses in Amman

I remember when Hana started walking; we would drive out to the Arabian Horse Club (Nadi al Jawad) out on the airport road and would walk around the stables meeting horses. We fell in love with a black horse called Obama who is just so friendly…

Get your copy!

Empowering Women Through Cooking Contributor

I’ve contributed a “made with love from the freshest ingredients” recipe to ‘Empowering Women through cooking – Jordan’ 

Get your copy today knowing that a part of the proceeds World Food Programme and Tkiyet Um Ali.

THE BLOGGER

Scattered and often late night thoughts.

Hello 32!

Life is a roller coaster; time passes by so fast you feel like a hamster on a wheel. I feel in the short 32 years that I’ve lived so far that I did it by the book, so here is to a year where I should go with my gut instead. I did my dues,…

Empowering Women through Cooking

Empowering women in the workplace, marketplace and community is a responsibility that falls on everyone’s shoulders. We need to actively fight for women to be a contributing leaders in everyday life. Forget social norms, forget…

Um Al Banat

To the world, a son is missing from the picture-perfect family, the comment of a lack of son is my daily struggle. “So how many kids?”, I smile and say two daughters, then comes the tilt. Whether it’s the head slightly tiled to the…

Baba…

It’s been two weeks since you passed away! Life has an unfair way of driving us back to our daily routine. Wake up, give Hana breakfast/prepare her lunch box, send her off to pre-school, pick her up for lunch, then head home to mmom's for…

The Types of People You’ll Meet at the MENAICT2016

The first time I attended the MENAICT Forum was the year it was officially launched was back in 2010, I had just started my journey to blogging Sleepless in Amman was only two months old at the time, and I honestly wasn’t sure why I was invited,…

30 Reasons We Love Queen Rania of Jordan

August 31st marks Queen Rania’s Birthday! If you know me at all, you would know that after my mother, I would consider her my role model! I love Queen Rania’s passion for initiatives for education development, children, refugees, and family! On…

THE CRITIC

A little bit of here and there.

Aila Restaurant - Fairmont Istanbul

Located at the Fairmont Quasar Hotel in Istanbul, we visited Aila Restaurant multiple evenings for dinner. The restaurant is named and inspired by Turkish sensation and singer, Safiye Ayla, but apparently the name is written as Aila, for ease…

Sushi Satay Night!

We love dining at the Grand Hyatt Amman, especially on Wednesdays when they host theme nights and serve different cuisines! This time it was the perfect combination, Satay for him, Sushi for me! When I think Sushi Buffet, a little piece…

Savor the Flavor: Al Karma Kitchen empowers women through Desserts

A Saturday well spent to say the least. Oz and I dropped off little Hana (see what I did there? It used to be Baby Hana, now its little Hana since we’re expecting another) and headed off to a tour to Al Karma Kitchen in Jabal Al Natheef. The…

The Royal Tent at the Crowne Plaza Amman

Located in the heart of Amman on the 6th roundabout, the Crowne Plaza Ramadan Tent iftar will not disappoint. Contrary to former years, the traditional outdoor buffet has now been placed inside a humongous tent to keep you warm as the temperature…

Souk Ramadan at Sawani by Grand Hyatt Amman

Othman and I accepted an invitation to the Grand Hyatt Amman to check out their 2017 Souk Ramadan hosted at the Sawani terrace last night. Despite the windy 18 degrees’ weather outside that sent chills up and down our spines, it would be safe…

Review: La Capitale Brasserie

Earlier in September I wrote about my hard hat tour visit to La Capitale, where we got the chance to walk through the grounds that were merely a concept at the time, and I got the chance to enjoy some of the items that Chef Arthur Vonderheyden.…