MarocMama

eat well, travel often, dream big!

Moroccan Carrot, Chickpea, Dried Fruit and Almond Salad from Paula of Vintage Kitchen Notes

I’m so happy to welcome Paula of Vintage Kitchen Notes as a guest blogger today.  Paula is one of the uber-talented bloggers I’ve gotten to know through #SundaySupper and a fellow international blogger. Her pictures alone make me want to climb through the screen and into her kitchen. Also, she’s located in Argentina, one of the South American destinations I’m dying to visit, so I guess crawling through the screen might not be such a bad idea? To find more of her great recipes you can connect with Paula on her blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  

Hello from the southern part of the world! I blog from Buenos Aires, the city where I live.

Being here today is exciting because the idea of learning more about different cuisines is very motivating. Moroccan always rings a good bell in my mind, and after meeting Amanda through Sunday Supper and snooping around her recipes, I realized that the mix of dried fruit, the tagines, preserved lemons and spices like cumin are what makes me love this type of food. Titles like lamb and eggplant tajinezaatar flat bread and sesame honey cookies make me swoon, and just shows what a talented cook this girl is.

I like to explore different food cultures. What foodie doesn’t right? In my case my heritage is a lot of Italian and regional, so growing up there were a lot of empanadasgrilled meats with chimichurri and dulce de leche

When Amanda asked for guest posts, specifying that she needed Moroccan dishes, I jumped at the opportunity. Spices and dried fruits are my middle name, and this carrot, chickpea and dried fruit salad fit the bill perfectly.

CARROT CHICKPEA SALAD

It´s the middle of winter here, but most of you who read this blog are under scorching temps, so a salad with pungent flavors was the perfect recipe for today. And anyway, the years have brought us milder winters, making salads a common appearance year round, not just during the warmer seasons. Salad is good for you, and this one is packed with healthy ingredients, it´s nutritious and colorful, the perfect lunch really.

Ever since I made this zucchini mint salad, ribbons are my favorite way to cut some vegetables when I use them raw in salads. Carrots are one of them, and they are not only visually attractive, but they give volume to the plate and I love that. Food is, after all, very visual. Not just for a blog picture, but in real life.

Most salads in general are very easy to adjust to personal taste. My choice here is a marked spice flavor, especially cumin which I love when it´s toasted and ground with a mortar and pestle. And then sliced, toasted almonds clearly change the final result. That crunch and nutty flavor goes extraordinarily well with the dried fruit and vegetables.

CARROT CHICKPEA SALAD 022

Back when I was a kid, chickpeas didn´t come in a can, at least not in this country. They were soaked overnight in cold water and boiled the next day until tender. I like to do it once in a while now, but nothing beats opening a can of already cooked chickpeas for a quick bite.

As it usually happens, I made the salad, took the pictures, ate half for lunch and the rest went into the fridge. It turns out that I particularly like the way the dressing macerates and softens the carrots when left to chill for a few hours. So this is a salad that can be prepared a few hours before. But add the chopped herbs and almonds at the last minute.

CARROT CHICKPEA SALAD

MOROCCAN CARROT, CHICKPEA, DRIED FRUIT AND ALMOND SALAD

barely adapted from 101Cookbooks

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

For the dressing:

  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2-3 Tbs fresh lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste

For the salad:

  • 2 large carrots
  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed if they´re from a can
  • 6 dried apricot halves, sliced
  • 4 black dried figs, sliced
  • ¼ to 1/3 cup sliced, toasted almonds
  • Fresh mint and dill, coarsely torn or left whole

Directions

For the dressing:

In a skillet, heat seeds over low heat for 1 or 2 minutes, until fragrant. Transfer to a mortar or grinder and coarsely grind.

In a jar mix the rest of the dressing ingredients and add the ground seeds. Reserve in the fridge while making the salad.

For the salad:

Peel carrots, and with the vegetable peeler, make long ribbons, letting them fall onto the serving plate. Add chickpeas, a few tablespoons of the dressing and mix lightly with your hands, mounding a bit.

Scatter the dried fruits and herbs on top, drizzle more dressing, add toasted almonds and serve.

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4 Final Thoughts on Moving Overseas

In less than week we’ll be embarking on the final leg of our move to Morocco.  What an interesting few months it has been. This probably won’t be my last post on the moving process but are my thoughts before take-off. I’ve gone through a tidal wave of emotions sometimes one at a time, and at others all at once. I went into this feeling very prepared and organized and I’ve learned one very important lesson; I’m a control freak and nothing about this process allows for that. There are so many things that are completely out of our hands and I have had many friends who have been through this remind me to just take a step back and let things happen as they’re meant to. Aside from these lessons about my personality, here are four thoughts that apply to anyone.

Packing

The “Stuff”

I’m attached to very few material objects, but I was shocked at how much “stuff” we’ve accumulated since our last move (only 4 years ago!). Having a plan for what to do with the stuff is critical. We sent some things ahead of us through a shipping container (no not a whole container!), other things we moved into a storage shed, and we got rid of even more. I waited to start getting rid of things.  I should have started this much sooner. We had to sort everything into 4 piles; things for the totes (heavy things like books, kitchen things, winter clothes), things we would keep, things that would go in our suitcases (that we needed right away), and finally things to get rid of. We had a big garage sale and got rid of a lot of things like clothes, toys, and housewares that we wouldn’t use again. I donated a LOT of clothes and toys (tax deduction!). This topic leads directly to my second point about patience. If you and your spouse have different opinions when it comes to dealing with your stuff, you really need to have a plan in place to deal with it.

Patience

I’ve lost my temper too many times to count, and it’s not something I’m proud of. I’ve gotten angry too quickly with my husband and with my kids, and most of it simply boils down to stress, and my inability to control much of the process.  I needed time-outs (I took very few), and I really should have scheduled my time differently. Moving is always a big undertaking but moving overseas adds in another dimension of crazy. There were too many things that were left until the last few weeks. We had known that we were moving 6 months before departure day…but most of the work was left for the last 6 weeks.

Boxes

Do as Much Yourself When You Can

I’ve read a lot of moving advice over the last several months.  Nearly everyone has fit into two categories a) they have a moving company who comes, takes their boxes, and moves everything to the new location and unloads everything – on someone else’s dime (they’re not paying for this, a company that’s relocating them is) OR b) they are moving with just what they can fit in their suitcases. We fit a different category.  We did as much as we could to save money, but we also wanted more than 2 suitcases of things with us in Morocco. 3 weeks before our departure we had International Van Lines come and pick up tote boxes.  These will travel via ship to Casablanca where we will pick them up. We rented a storage shed for 1 year to put the rest of our belongings in.  Next summer we’ll come back and decide what to do with it – whether we’ll stay in Morocco longer or come back to the US. For the sake of sanity I do think it might have been less taxing to pay someone to do more of the work. For the sake of our budget doing as much ourselves, and with the help of family was cost effective.

Saying Goodbye

A friend told me, don’t spend your final weeks fighting and stressed, share them with the people you love and will be leaving. This was right in the middle of me on the verge of a panic attack. We’ve spent a lot of time talking with the kids to prepare them.  I’m most worried about how they will handle the transition. There are a lot of things they are looking forward to but there are also things, and especially people, I know they will miss.  Saying goodbyes is as much about preparing the people we love for our departure as it is for our own benefit. This is possibly the most important component of making such a big move. Spend plenty of time with the people you love, and don’t forget to say goodbye.

I plan to write another post that gives a breakdown of the steps to our move.  I also am considering a post that includes some financial information about what it really cost us to make this move and how the “unpacking” goes. I’m going to be available a little less often in the coming weeks, but don’t worry I have had many great friends and bloggers who have stepped up to help me out.  There are some seriously amazing guest posts coming your way! (and a few from me) If you’ve got questions leave me a comment and maybe I’ll do a Q&A post to answer them.

 

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Harissa Breakfast Scramble

It seems way to early to start thinking about back to school – seriously where did the summer go?? My last few shopping trips to pick up items for packing I couldn’t help but notice more and more parents and kids walking the aisles with their supply lists. i have to admit it made me a little teary. I know we’ll have school supplies in Morocco but my favorite part of the new year is checking things off of that supply list! The thing I dislike the most about the school year is making breakfast. I just don’t like it! I’m always on the look out for fast, healthy meals that I know my kids (and husband) will eat. I think this is a real winner.

Harissa Breakfast Scramble

 Eggs are such a good way to get a lot of protein. I know so many people who like to add salsa or hot sauce to their eggs.  I thought why not harissa? Not only is this excellent for a quick weekday breakfast, it’s also good for brunch.  You could add in chopped vegetables, shredded potatoes, anything really to bulk it up.

Harissa Eggs

If you’re not one for scrambled eggs, make a frittata or omlette.  Instead of scrambling the eggs while cooking just leave them sit alone and set up.  You can adjust the amount of harissa too – maybe just a little bit for kids while adults might like more of a kick. One more great suggestion – if you only eat egg whites adding a bit of the harissa sauce will add flavor without fat.  I think egg whites have no taste so this is a great idea!

Harissa Breakfast Scramble

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs (free range or organic if possible)
  • 1 package Saffron Road Harissa Simmer Sauce (you won’t use the whole package)
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • any other breakfast sides or fillings you enjoy such as meat, potatoes, or vegetables

Cracked Eggs for Breakfast

Directions

  • In a skillet pan melt 1 Tbsp of butter.
  • Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk with a fork to scramble.
  • Add 1-2 Tbsp harissa simmer sauce to the eggs and whisk.  You can add more harissa until you achieve desired “heat” level.
  • Once the butter has melted, add the eggs to the skillet and use a silicone spatula to continually stir the eggs until cooked through.
  • The eggs will have a reddish/brown tint this is from the harissa.  The eggs will only take 3-4 minutes to cook through on medium high heat.
  • Serve with extra harissa on the side and any sides of your choice.

What are some of your favorite go-to breakfast ideas for school mornings?

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Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches

One of the first things I learned how to make was chocolate chip cookies.  My grandma would stand my sister and I up on chairs at her kitchen counter and we would mix in the ingredients one by one to make cookies.  I usually got to run the hand mixer because I was older but my sister got to crack the eggs. Then we’d take turns rolling long “dough snakes” that would be wrapped in plastic wrap and put in the freezer.  See, with my grandma we rarely, if ever baked the dough. We just sliced off a piece of frozen dough whenever we wanted. That’s right, I was raised a raw-dough-eating-rebel. Grandma never thought twice, and it wasn’t until I had kids and really started paying attention to ingredients that I even gave it a second thought. I started making (and baking) chocolate chip cookies for my kids long before I could cook a real meal. But once we started to shift to all gluten-free for MarocBaba I stopped baking so much and I never bought pre-made dough because it was almost impossible to find gluten-free.

But, just recently I found out Pillsbury has a new line of gluten-free dough – including chocolate chip cookie dough! Could it be?

Cookie Dough

It’s almost too good to be true (make sure to notice the “don’t eat raw dough warning” – sorry grandma!) Now, if you’re gluten-free you’ve probably had your fair share of disappointment with gluten-free products.  They usually don’t taste quite as good, maybe they have a bad after taste or are too dry, or too dense. So the real test once this arrived was, would it pass the blind taste test?  While I keep things about 80% gluten-free I often do buy my kids treats that have gluten.  They especially like these mini chocolate chip cookies I get from our grocery store’s bakery.  Could I pass these off as them? There was only one way to find out…

Mini Ice Cream Sandwiches

The bake and taste test.

I rolled the dough into small balls, about half the size of a ping pong ball and then popped the pan in the freezer while the oven preheated. After baking for about 8 minutes I pulled them out and let the cookies cool.

Test #1 I gave a warm cookie to my youngest. He gobbled it up and made no comment.

Test #2 after the cookies cooled I put a teaspoon of chocolate ice cream in the middle of two cookies and rolled it in sprinkles.  This treat went to my oldest, my sidekick and recipe taste-tester, who said “Mom, these aren’t gluten-free are they?” Score!  Honestly, these taste just like chocolate chip cookies with gluten and passed the kid test twice!

But wait, there’s more!

Pillsbury has two other products, a gluten free pie dough, and a gluten free pizza dough available.  Watch for upcoming recipes here (like a gluten-free almond blueberry galette) using these new products.

Want to find out more about these products? Visit the Pillsbury website to find a store near you that is carrying these products, other recipes and ideas, and nutritional information

Want to win a baking set from Pillsbury and one of each of these new gluten-free products to try?  Enter my giveaway and I’ll select one winner from all comments to receive a prize pack.  Make sure to stop by the Pillsbury website to find out more about these products and follow the Rafflecopter directions to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Pillsbury

 

This post is part of a sponsored campaign with Pillsbury®.  As always, all opinions are my own. 

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15 Recipe Ideas for Day Old Bread

In  Morocco it’s almost unheard of to throw away bread. Even though it is consumed at least three times a day and there inevitably is bread leftover, it is saved, reused if possible and if not, put into the garbage in a separate bag.  It’s then often fed to animals. Instead of letting these day-old pieces go to waste, why not give them a second life?

15 Recipe Ideas for Day Old Bread

Now, want my recipe for an easy chocolate chip bread pudding?  It’s a great dessert or sweet breakfast for a special occasion.  You might want to double this recipe because everyone at my house was fighting for the last few bites!

Chocolate Bread Pudding

Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of cubed day old bread
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup - 1/2 cup of semisweet chocolate chips
  • cooking spray or butter for baking tin
  • Loaf pan or 8x8 baking pan

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375F.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine whole milk, cream, and eggs. Whisk until blended.
  • Beat in sugar and vanilla.
  • Add cubed bread to the liquid mixture. Mix bread and press into liquid to make sure the bread absorbs as much liquid as possible.
  • Spray or butter baking pan.
  • Pour saturated bread into the baking dish and add chocolate chips to the top. (You may want to stir the bread, but be careful as the chocolate chips tend to fall to the bottom).
  • Bake for 30-45 minutes until the top of the bread is crispy. The bread pudding will remain dense but all of the liquid should be cooked through.
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http://marocmama.com/2013/08/15-recipe-ideas-for-day-old-bread.html

 Find some more ideas to use up all your bread!

Croutons

Italian Seasoned Croutons from Aimee of Like Mother Like Daughter

Homemade Croutons from Modern Christian Homemaker

Bread Pudding

Sweet Potato Bread Pudding 

Toffee Bread Pudding from Crumbs and Chaos

Croissant Bread Pudding from The Culinary Life

–  Gluten-Free Orange Almond Bread Pudding 

Slow Cooker Spiced Pear Bread Pudding from Snappy Gourmet

Leek Bread Pudding from Fifteen Spatulas

Cranberry Pistachio Bread Pudding from Taste, Love, and Nourish

Mushroom and Leek Savory Bread Pudding from Confident Cook Hesitant Baker

Other Great Ideas

Israeli Panzanella Salad from What Jew Wanna Cook

Panade with Swiss Chard and Onion from Farm Fresh Feasts

Bread Patties a la India Style – Fusion Bread Dumplings from Masala Herb

Austrian Beef Bread Dumplings

–  Cheese Bread Patties

What’s your favorite way to use up day-old bread?

15 Recipe Ideas for Day Old Bread

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{Expat Guest Post} Varya of The Creative World of Varya

When we decided to become expats, I knew there were others like us out there – I just had to find them.  Once I started looking, I was amazed at just how many people have chosen an expatriate lifestyle. So many people tell me that they wish they could move to another country; I want to share the stories of those who have made the choice.  I hope that these stories might encourage others to take the plunge. Today’s post is from Varya of the Creative World of Varya.  She’s a mom of 2 raising a multicultural and multilingual family. Varya has many years of experience working with children and families on nurturing language, physical and creativity development. If you’ve ever wondered what I was like growing up just read the first 3 sentences of this guest post – that was me too!  You can connect with Varya on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Sulia, and Instagram.

Since I was a little girl, I loved geography, history and languages. Other countries, nationalities and cultures fascinated me. I dreamed of visiting other place in my own country and other countries as well.

Hi, I am Varya, originally from Russia, Siberia. I’ve been living in China for the past 12 years and I got married here to the love of my life and we have 2 wonderful girls.

English Corner Dumplings

My first overseas trip happened in 1998. It was related to some personal things going on in my life at that time. I loved Malaysia. I spent almost 3 lovely months and I wished I could visit more places in the future.

Second time I left Russia for a Baha’i course I was invited to in Kazakhstan. That summer I also visited Kyrgyzstan. It was a very refreshing change as well as it was quite different culturally from familiar Russia.

Third time I left the country for a conference in India. It was magical. I was so in love with the country that travelling 3rd class, simple food, even some unfortunate things that happened that summer never imprinted my memory with any negative emotions.

The same summer a friend of mine told me she moved to China to teach English. She advised me to try for her school. I did, but it didn;t work out. I was “burning” with the idea of going somewhere for a short time (a year or two) to work and live and so I applied to so many different places. I almost ended up in Africa  but China worked out faster and before I knew what was happening, I moved here!

Dinner with English Corner

It wasn’t easy at first- I had a great culture shock. I missed friends, I felt horrible as I couldn’t communicate with people and the food was so different!

However, as the time passed by, I started falling in love with this country and its people. I can’t say that until now I completely “get” Chinese mentality but I believe that people are people and anywhere we go it is our attitude and sincerity towards others that count. So, now it has been 12 years since I moved to this country and I really don’t think we will be leaving any time soon!

From what I wrote above it seems like everything smooth and easy. While my first 2 times out of country were sponsored by family and friends, my trip to India and my move to China were all me. I worked hard, I took more hours at my stable place of work. I took lots of tutoring hours, I was blessed that a friend offered me a temp job at a Baha’i Publishing Trust. I was determined to travel and I found the ways.

What I am trying to say here is that if 12 years ago, when it was very expensive and much harder to travel, I found a way to fulfill my dreams, anyone can do it now, when there are so many more opportunities for the international travel.

It is important to believe that you can achieve your dream – and it will happen. Yes, sometimes we have to work harder than usually to gather resources but it is not impossible.

Once we are in another country, we can choose how to survive there – will be become snobbish foreigners that feel everyone and everyone owe it to them? Or will be try and blend with the local population, embrace the culture (as much as possible, cause you know – the effort is what really counts!), and accept and deal with challenges in honourable ways?

It is not always possible to blend 100% with the local friends but when we try to understand where they come from, what moves them and how to deal with them, we get the best results and satisfaction from living abroad.

 Thank you so much Varya for sharing a little bit of your life and experience with me and other readers!

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6 Moorish Influences to See (and Eat) in Portugal

At the top of my travel bucket list is a trip to Portugal.  I’ve tried for years to get a layover on our way to Morocco that stops in Lisbon but have been unsuccessful.  One of the first trips I plan to take once we’re settled in Marrkech is to this country. Today’s post is a guest post from Katie, a blogger who loves to travel, she believes that wherever she goes, experiencing the culture and learning about the local history makes her adventures even more delightful. You can find her on twitter @delightsomeblog.

Moorish influences can be seen throughout the world – and perhaps nowhere more so than in Portugal. One of our family’s favourite destinations, Portugal is one of Europe’s oldest countries so is steeped in history. Invaded by the Moors in 711, who established a capital at Shelb – now called Silves –Arabic influences can still be seen today. In everything from some of Portugal’s biggest attractions, to the littlest touches, it’s fascinating to spot remnants of this country’s colourful heritage:

Silves Castle Portugal

credit: http://goo.gl/OvZRxi

It goes without saying that Silves Castle should be first on our list. We’ve whiled away many an overcast day here. The perfect place to explore when the weather isn’t Portugal’s usual wall-to-wall sunshine, Silves Castle was once at the heart of the Algarve’s Moorish capital. Restored in 1835, this imposing structure sits amid pretty cobbled, pedestrianized streets, with stunning views of orange and almond groves stretching as far as the eye can see.

Flor da Laranja

We haven’t visited Morocco yet. So when we do, we may gain a new favourite Moroccan restaurant. But, up until then, this is it. A cosy gem of a place sitting in the tangle of streets which make up the trendy Bairro Alto neighbourhood of Lisbon, it serves up generous portions of home cooked Moroccan food. We usually opt for dolmas followed by delectable lemon chicken and delicious lamb tagine.

Couvert

Go to any restaurant in Portugal and you’ll usually be offered couvert – a selection of breads and snacks to nibble while you look at the menu. It usually consists of olives, sardine pate and cheese spread, along with marinated carrots. Immersed in olive oil, white wine vinegar, garlic and cinnamon, it’s a dish that’s very similar to recipes for Moroccan spiced carrots, which usually have the addition of cumin, paprika and lemon juice.

Elvas

Wander around the stunning UNESCO world heritage site of Elvas and you’ll spot a plethora of Moorish influences. With its Roman-Moorish castle, white-washed houses, intricate ironwork and Moorish city gates, with their characteristic horseshoe-arched profile, a trip to Elvas is like stepping back in time.

Mértola Mosque

It may have now been turned into a church, but Mértola Mosque’s origins stand out in its striking architecture. Even though the interior has been modified, you can still see the Mihrab, a semicircular niche in the wall, which indicates the direction of Mecca, hence the direction Muslims should face when praying. There are also three horseshoe shaped arches with an alfiz, a typically Islamic decorative feature.

portugal-3

Credit: http://goo.gl/BtRNx0

Albufeira

It’s one of Portugal’s most popular package holiday spots so there are plenty of all-inclusive summer deals to be had. It owes its name to the Moors, originally called Baltum by the Romans, the Moors gave it the name Albufeira, Arabic for Castle of the Sea. And, though an earthquake in 1755 destroyed much of the town, there’s still a Moorish feel to parts of central Albufeira, with its narrow streets and mosaic-style tiling. Meandering around Albufeira’s pretty streets and fitting in a spot of shopping before dining in one of its many restaurants makes the perfect day trip. For a special end to our holiday, we often treat ourselves to a meal at the Aldar. Fittingly for a country which is a historical melting pot, the Aldar blends Moroccan and Mediterranean influences. Delicacies such as Tajine Tfaya with chicken, olives and preserved lemons are served up along with panoramic views of the ocean.

 

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Creative Gift Ideas for Adults and Kids This Eid

Gift-giving is a tradition in Moroccan, and most Islamic cultures. You wouldn’t show up at someone’s home for dinner without a small gift for the hostess or children.  For Eid-al-Fitr, and Eid-al-Adha gifts take on a more celebratory role.  In Islamic countries the practice of gift giving during these holidays is largely based on giving children gifts.  It makes the event feel festive.  For children who have fasted the entire month of Ramadan (after which we celebrate Eid-al-Fitr) this is a token, a reward for their hard work and sacrifices. I have to admit it’s just in recent years that we’ve started to make the celebration of Eids more of a “big deal” by inviting family over and having small gifts for the kids. Since we are moving in two weeks, my sister has invited us (she’s not Muslim by the way) to her house for Eid dinner.

Eid Gift Ideas

If you’re hoping to celebrate in a bigger way this year here are some ideas from other bloggers to pique your interest;

 

Eid Gift Ideas Boys

My friend Amnah of, Little Life of Mine is kind of genius when it comes to her Eid gift bags.  I wish she was my auntie!  In this post she talks about some of the bags she has made for family members and her thought process as she puts them together.

If you’re like me then you could be at a complete loss as to what to get for older nieces and nephews that you have potentially spent quite a bit of time away from.  Amnah also faced this situation and opted for a sit down interview (ok not that serious!) with the kids to get a feel for what they like, and what they really weren’t into.  When in doubt – ask!  I think this point is especially true for older kids with specific tastes.

Eid Treat Bag

Do community members at your masjid hand-out treats to the kids on the Eid?  In some communities this is very common.  It reminds me of large family gatherings in Morocco for Eid when everyone brings something for the children of the family. Saira at Confessions of a Muslim Momaholic helps her kids make their own bags before Eid.  Then before the service they fill them with items that will keep them busy during prayers.  Aftewards they have a bag to take home their goodies too!

Eid Gift Bags

If your community doesn’t hand out treats for the kids wouldn’t that be a great tradition to start? Amnah has some really great, low-cost ideas to create gift bags en masse. You could tailor the contents for older kids and younger kids, but I’m sure that kids of any age would love to discover something special waiting for them on Eid.

Eid Lollipops

It’s a craft and a gift rolled into one!  Samantha at Life of a Mompreneur makes these fun chocolate lollipops and then wraps them in cello.  They can then be passed out as an Eid treat – just be sure to eat them first so they don’t melt! These might be a little fussy for a very small child to make but a great project for a 8+ year old to try with guidance.

Eid can take on a flavor of commercialsim too – just like any other holiday.  But, there are many ways to have a sustainable and holisitic holiday. Priscilla of Salam Mama has so many great suggestions such as; having a Mealess Monday (or other day) throughout the year, using leftover dates in creative ways, extend the Ramadan spirit of giving throughout the year, opt for gifting “green” gifts and spreading the love.  Her post contains some really fabulous ideas for a green Eid!

Eid Decorations

A Crafty Arab shares these great printables for Eid decorations.  There are some that could be used for home decorating and others for specializing treat bags or table decorations.

Food Gift Ideas

Ma’amoul – These cookies are popular in Ramadan too, but especially during Eid. In the Middle East there are special molds used to make these cookies but you can use shaped petit four pans to create unique shapes and designs. Life of a Mompreneur shares her easy recipe to create ma’amoul in an American stocked kitchen.

Checkerboard Cookies are some of my favorite.  I just love multi-colored cookies. I think these are a fun addition to any cookie plate.  Chef in Disguise has this recipe on her website.

Want to have a special breakfast treat either at the masjid or to send home with kids?  What about a breakfast pizza?  Summer Eid’s a great time to do this.  Simply bake the crusts and provide the frosting in a small container, and fruit in another.  This recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie will get you started.

Sheep Cake Pops.  Bakerella makes an adorable sheep cake pop.  You might want to save them for Eid al Adha but really is there any wrong time to make a sheep on a stick? No I didn’t think so.

Gift Ideas for Adults

Sometimes it’s all about the kids and adults get left out.  Especially for those of a “transitioning” age – say 17-22ish I think giving gifts is still applicable.  Really being generous to everyone is always appreciated.  Some ideas might include;

Hand painted tile coasters – awesome for a dorm or apartment. You can never have too many coasters.

Homemade Granola – Granola is so easy to make and almost everyone enjoys it.  You can inexpensively make a very large batch and divide it up.

Cookbooks!  For the new wife, or for someone who might be moving into their first apartment cookbooks can be a lifesaver.  I recently received a copy of Relish, by Daphne Oz. I was surprised with the layout of the book.  While it certainly has recipes (great recipes I might add!) it also has life sections. I really consider it a home ec course in a much more attractive and readable form.  She provides self-care tips, entertaining advice, and even some basic sewing tips.  I was really confused at first, but the more I looked at the book the more I realized this would be THE perfect book to give to a young adult, and/or newlywed bride.

A Few Others to Consider;

 

Will you be gifting anything special this year?  Share your ideas in the comments below!  

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