Recipe: Shrimp Enchiladas in Jalapeño Cream Sauce

Shrimp Enchiladas in Jalapeno Cream Sauce

So I just got called a ‘culinary artist’ by an old friend in the comments of the instagram picture of this recipe. Guys, let me tell you something: I am not a culinary artist!

I was super flattered to receive the comment, but I wanted to tell you all that I am by no means an expert. I like to think of myself as a mad scientist when it comes to cooking. I make a mess and I sometimes look crazy doing it. I sometimes use measurements, but usually I don’t because I like to use my own gauge for things. Sometimes things turn out well (and I blog about them), but sometimes they don’t and I try again.

I love to cook, but I’m still learning. So use these recipes with that in mind! With that being said, let’s talk about these Shrimp Enchiladas in Jalapeño Cream Sauce.

Shrimp Enchiladas in Jalapeno Cream Sauce

Can we just talk about the sauce first? The sauce is to die for, guys! I am currently obsessed with fresh herbs. I never really used cilantro or basil in my cooking before, but now I just can’t get enough of the fresh taste they bring to dishes. There’s fresh cilantro in the cream sauce, along with jalapeños, which just matches so perfectly with the crunchy, shrimp filling inside.

Baked until the sauce is hot and bubbling, these enchiladas are best eaten on a cold, Winter day when you’re craving something warm and comforting. And what can be better than a dish served straight out of the oven?

The best part is that you can prepare the enchiladas in advance and refrigerate. Then all you have to do is pour the sauce on top, bake for half an hour, and voila! A comforting and yummy meal is at your table. So what are you waiting for?  (more…)

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The Balancing Act

So I have a confession to make guys: I’ve become one of those girls.

Which girls are those, you ask? Well, one of those girls who is portrayed negatively in movies and TV shows. The one that abandons everything once she enters a new relationship. The one who ditches her friends to spend time with her new man. Yup, one of those girls.

Those girls are negatively portrayed in the media because there’s the common belief that girls gotta stick together. Girls before boys (but in a more crude way, if you know what I mean) is the common saying. But when you get married, that doesn’t really apply.

Priorities change and your focus shifts. So many things have fallen by the wayside since marriage, and I’m struggling to keep up with them all. Some things were inevitable, like Goodreads and Korean dramas, while others like reading and keeping in touch with people are still a surprise. I’m still trying to find a balance and do all the things I used to when I was single, but it’s hard.

Before marriage, it was so much easier to keep in touch, especially with family. I didn’t usually have to put any effort because they were always around. But now, it’s so much harder. If I want to stay in contact with someone, I have to do myself. Yup, the perks of being an adult! :P

So apologies to all the people I haven’t been keeping in touch with since marriage! You know who you are (hopefully). You probably heard from at some point today as I went through my contact list and messaged all the people I haven’t spoken to in a few weeks.

I’m hoping to figure out a routine soon so I can get back to writing and baking and reading and everything else. So bear with me while I figure out a way to get my feet back on the ground, because I currently still feel like I’m flying.

Hope you’re all well.

Thanks for reading,

Ikhlas

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Recipe: Chicken in Mushroom Cream Sauce

chicken in mushroom cream sauce

Hello friends! So first of all, ignore the low quality picture of this recipe. I am currently without a camera and am making do with my phone. -_-

I wasn’t actually going to post this recipe, because I aim to post only high-quality pictures of recipes, but I got a few requests to share the recipe via Instagram, so I thought why not! I needed something to blog about, so I thought why not this yummy Chicken in Mushroom Cream Sauce Recipe?

I recently started cooking again, and was searching for some easy chicken recipes to make. I’ve seen various versions of this recipe online for awhile, and made it a few nights ago under an hour. I made it with rice, but you could easily eat it on its own with a fork, with pasta, or even with some naan (as my husband did!).

chicken in mushroom cream sauce

I’m still adjusting to married life and part of that adjustment is figuring out what my husband likes to eat and what he doesn’t like to eat!  We’re both so different in our tastes, so it’s still a little tricky to find meals that we’ll both eat because of our taste preferences.

I was a little nervous about serving this dish to my husband, because I accidentally added too many mushrooms, but luckily he ended up liking it! He ate it with garlic naan, which was kind of unexpected, but he enjoyed it, which is what matters. (more…)

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The Married Life

henna

Hello friends! Wow, so more than a month has passed by since my last post. Yikes!

So I’m writing this as a married lady now, and it kind of feels weird. I still catch myself calling my husband my fiance when talking about him to other people, before catching myself. I also have these weird moments when I pause and think, “Is this really my life?” So much changed so quickly that I’m still getting used to my new reality and the other person I now share my life with.

Sometimes I still don’t believe that the wedding is over; I had stressed so much about so many little things and now that I think back to them, I realise how silly those things were.

mehndi

In classic me fashion, I was sick throughout the whole wedding. -_- Why is this classic? Because I often get so nervous that I make myself sick. I can’t eat, can’t sleep, and basically can’t function because of nerves. This happened the first time I met my fiance, when we we became engaged, and every meeting subsequent that. The wedding day? I was a mess.

In the days before the wedding, I hadn’t eaten or slept and so I was utterly exhausted by the time the Nikkah or Islamic marriage came around. I still remember after the Nikkah was performed and I was led outside to meet my new husband; it was such a cold day and I was already shaking from nerves. Having hardly spoken much to my fiance (now husband) prior to the wedding, I had no idea what to say to the guy! Luckily, our little photo-op didn’t last long as our family was as cold as we were (albeit they were wearing coats and we weren’t!) and soon we got to leave in our respective cars.

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At the mehndi that night, everyone tried to tell me to calm down! They all kept saying, what else is there to be nervous about? You’re already married! But my stubborn stomach wouldn’t listen. It churned and turned right up until my entrance, and I felt like I was going to pass out as I saw all eyes on me, including the ones of my now husband. Being force-fed meethai or Indian sweets didn’t help my condition but I tried to be a good sport about it, taking sips of water in between. My husband took it all in good grace and ate every truffle and ladoo that was fed to him. I don’t know how he did it!

The next day was our reception and rukhsati. That was the official ‘giving away’ part of the wedding as my dad would officially give my hand to my husband. I was better this day, having gotten a little more sleep the night before. I even managed to eat a few bites of rice in between getting my hair and makeup done but as the hours ticked closer to the event, I could feel the violent butterflies re-emerging.

I made it through my photoshoot without incident, but as soon as my husband arrived, so did the jitters. Everytime the photographer told me to look at him or put my hand in his hand, I erupted in a burst of violent giggles. It was so hard! Having never held a guy’s hand before, it was kind of hard to do it on the spot, with a strange man watching me, and then giving directions on how to make it look better.

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As the event wore on, I found my head getting heavier and heavier. All I could think about as I smiled and posed for photos was of lying down and falling asleep. I started feeling so dizzy that I couldn’t even eat the food at the wedding or try the wedding cake! What’s worse is my new husband was so worried about me he didn’t eat much either. I felt so bad!

Now that I think back to my wedding day, I wish I could have slapped some sense into myself. I hardly enjoyed the day and just stressed everyone out around me. I tried to be calm, but I was feeling so many emotions that I was just a mess. By the time the event finally came to a close, I felt numb. As my family and friends cried and hugged me goodbye at the Rukhsati, I remember feeling so strange.

sweets

I often find myself thinking back to this time last year; being in teacher’s college and thinking that I would never get married. All my friends were getting married or were engaged, and I was depressed about not finding someone. But within a few months of thinking this, I met my fiance and the rest, as they say, is history! Alhamdulilah :)

Even though we’ve only been married for a few short weeks, I can’t imagine my life without my husband. After being engaged in June, we spoke every day up until a week before the wedding. But what I discovered about him in those seven months pales in comparison to what I know about him now after being married for just a week. SubhanAllah, it’s amazing.

flower

I’ve been trying to get back into blogging for a few weeks now but there’s always something or other going on. This blog, and the other have taken a hit, and I keep feeling guilty about it. But I’m hoping to try to get into a new routine soon so I can get back to blogging, writing, and baking. In the meantime, please excuse the sporadic posts!

I hope you’re all having a good start to the new year! I can’t believe January is almost over! Time is definitely flying.

Anyways, hope you’re all well. :)

Thanks for reading,

Ikhlas

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Hello December

So it’s been almost a month since I last updated, yikes! After quitting my job at Chapters last month, I thought things would be nice and slow and relaxing, but they definitely haven’t been!

So what have I been up to this past month, other than wedding planning? Lots!

I’ve been listening to the new Taylor Swift album pretty much on repeat. And when that wasn’t enough, I went out and bought the physical album because it was that awesome (don’t judge me). The last time I bought a physical CD was back in high school and it was Hilary Duff. -_- It’s such a fun CD to listen to, and totally takes me mind off wedding jitters (who needs nerves when you’re jamming to Blank Space?!)

I also got back into reading! In my last few days of work I bought a few books and in my attempts to start reading more ‘adult fiction’, the first title I selected was Bone Season. It’s too bad that it didn’t end up being the best book, but it did get back into reading! It started off strong, but I lost interest pretty early on. There was just way too much to keep track of and I had to force myself to finish it by the last third. But I’m glad I’m done, because I can finally start to tackle some of the books that have been on my shelves for months. Some examples include: Alif the Unseen, The Name of the Wind, Cress, and Longbourn. What should I read next?

I also finished marathoning Gossip Girl. Again, don’t judge me! I started it merely out of curiosity more than a month ago and it was so addictive, I kept going! There were so many things wrong with it, so it was more of a guilty pleasure than anything else.

But what I spent the bulk of the month doing was preparing for a pre-wedding reception that my parents threw for me just last week. I had a vision for the party and tried to organize it the best I could to make it happen. There were a few setbacks, like my dress not fitting properly and the banquet hall screwing up with some of the decor, but alhamdulilah it went well for the most part. There were some emotional speeches and moments, and it all just made me realise how lucky I truly am. :)

Anyways, now my sole focus is on wedding planning. I’m hoping I can update both my blogs a little more, start skipping again, and get back to eating healthy. Those are my goals for this month…what are yours? Hope you all had a good November :)

Thanks for reading,

Ikhlas

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