For an explanation of La Kitchen series, click here.
(Psst..please bare with the crazy alignment..I tried to fix it but it still went haywire..)
My next guest writes a blog where she shares homemade comfort food, ranging from Asian to Western recipes. On top of that, she also features her lovely garden and amazing countryside adventures with her family. Her blog is studded with lots of photos of her everyday life in foreign land and if you love to gawk at pretty photos, then her blog is the one you should follow. So, without further ado, let's welcome Muna Mahdzar-Fadaaq of Life Through My Lense! :D
1. Tell us about yourself and your kitchen.
Hiya. My name is Muna and welcome to my kitchen. Let me begin by telling you a little bit about myself.
I‘ve been married for 25 years to a wonderful man who also happens to be my best friend. Coincidence? I think not. And I, for the last 16 years, have been the proud mom of a delightful young lady.
Cooking at home is very important to me. I love that time of the evening when my husband and my daughter sit for our evening meal; this is our time for catching up on what’s been going on during the day. Apart from cooking, my other interest includes painting, photography, gardening, floral arrangement and general messing around.
2. What is your everyday cooking style? Do you bake often?
My style of cooking is above all practical – simple but delicious food, ideal for family and friends. I do love to try out new recipes both regional and global; the weirder the ingredients, the better.
To quote American writer Arnold Lobel, “All’s well that ends with a good meal.”
If the dining room is the heart of the home then the kitchen is the pulse that feeds it.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE my kitchen. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think “ Lucky me!”
My kitchen is white with black granite countertops. It has a Belfast sink, an Aga, an induction stove and an oven. It also has a separate laundry and drying room and a larder.
One of things I love about my kitchen is the big glass window where we have most of our informal meals. It lets in loads of light into the kitchen and let us on the view of the surrounding countryside.
5. What is the biggest challenge in your kitchen?
One of the challenges I have with this kitchen is trying to keep it warm during winter. It does get pretty cold in winter and it doesn’t help that we have an open floor plan kitchen (which I so adore and will not have it any other way! Having the Aga on during winter does help keep the kitchen warm.
6. What type of kitchen would you like to have in the future?
Would I change anything? Maybe just a few of the appliances but nothing major, just some bits and bobs. Perhaps installing under-floor heating in the kitchen would be great, just for those cold winter days for me to play “housewife”.
7. Name us your favorite kitchen tool/equipment? (Picture)
No kitchen should go without state-of-the-art gadget and paraphernalia. Like many people out there, I’m always on a lookout for labour-saving thingamajigs. In the end, it boils down to these 2 things – my staff mixer and my non-stick pancake pan. Simply put – life’s harder without them! And I practically use them on a regular basis.
4. What is your favorite cookbook? (Pictures)
I don’t have a giant collection of cookbooks and these are some from my rather modest collection.
It’s hard to pick any one of these books as favourite, much like picking a favourite child. Having said that, some of my more referred-to books include Rachel Allens, Rick Stein and Jamie Oliver.
However, I seriously love Nigella Lawson’s Feasts - a gift from hubby way back in 2005. Her recipes are simple and accessible and the results never fail to delight the family.
8. What are you cooking for us today?
Lastly, let me end this installation of “Her Kitchen” by leaving you with one of my family’s favourite recipe from Nigella’s Feasts. I hope you’ll try it and enjoy it as much as my family does.
Lemon Passionfruit Meringue Cake
125 grams unsalted butter
4 eggs, separated
300 grams sugar
100 grams flour
25 grams corn flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Zest of one lemon
4 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp milk
½ tsp cream of tartar
150 ml whipping cream
150 grams lemon curd
Flesh of three passion fruits
Preheat the oven to 200C.
Line and butter two 21 cm sandwich tins.
Mix the egg yolks, 100 grams of the sugar, butter, flour, corn flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, and lemon zest in a processor.
Add the lemon juice and milk and process again.
Divide the mixture between the prepared tins.
Spread until smooth.
Whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar until peaks form. Then slowly whisk in 200 grams of sugar.
Divide the whisked whites between two sponge-filled tins, spreading the meringue straight on top of the cake batter.
Smooth one flat with a metal spatula and with the back of a spoon, peak the other.
Put the tins in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes.
When done, remove both cakes to a wire rack and let cool completely in the tins.
Unmold the flat-topped one onto a cake stand, meringue side up.
Whisk the cream until thick but not stiff, and set aside.
Spread the flat sponge surface of the first cake with lemon curd mixed with passionfruits, and then spread over the cream and top with the remaining cake, meringue side up.
RC: Interested to join La Kitchen event? All you need to do is email me your interest (just fill in the "Contact Us" form in below bar) and I'll forward to you the questionnaire and guidelines. :) Your kitchen will be queued for coming event! :D