Happiness

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Of all things-California…

Moaning Caves, CA

The 234 steps to descend down to the cavern

colors of fall!

    

  

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of what I love again…

a compilation from my favorite fashion weeks, New York Fashion week and Pakistan Fashion week..

   

     

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Halloween fun

One of the major benefits of being a college student in the US is the shit load of free stuff that is basically handed out to you everywhere ranging from free movies to food even toothbrushes. This weekend in celebration of Halloween my university had a haunted harvest themed festival.  pumpkin carving, face painting, fortune-telling, creepy photographs, games and of course food which in itself ranged from fries to chocolates, gummy worms, candied apples and more…all free. The almost perfect chill in the air made the night another amazing experience…

It was my first experience pumpkin carving ever, so needless to say I was super excited, unfortunately I was not expecting the gooeiness involved.

the delicious cupcakes, we messed up the icing in our over-zealousness to grab as many as we could.

free shows and chalking in the fluorescent chalking in the union!

  

 

the end result: two very happy pumpkins 😀

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how to start a sunday

….ofcourse with a good breakfast! In my case the ‘only’ breakfast I have the entire week. In other words sundays are special.

1) Start by taking the dogs out and then running to the starbucks down the road for a start-me-up drink. Today being cold meant that I indulge in a salted caramel hot chocolate. bliss.

2) whip up an amzingly spicy omlette along with publix fresh whole grain bread(bought a week ago)

     

VOILA!  

well ofcourse how world systems run, the dogs ate my favorite cheese(havarati) and while I cleaned up the mess and punished them the breakfast and hot chocolate got cold… :/

p.s. if anyone thought special sundays means a egg souffle or baked goodies, Im a student…

p.p.s what Im listening to today..florence and the machines! my newest fixation

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why the occupation is the coolest thing now..

what started as a small scale series of demonstrations on wall street has now gained immense momentum. The main protests are mostly against social and economic disparity, corporate greed, the immense influence of lobbyists on the government, People are unhappy and they want change. The change that has been promised again and again. It should be no surprise that this demonstration has gained momentum at a time like this, where inflation is on the rise, there are no jobs, salaries are actually decreasing and the prices of commodities keep on increasing + there are very few governmental benefits especially due to the continuous cuts.

Yesterday Tallahassee, the seat of Florida, had its very own gathering. College students from the three major universities in the capital, namely Florida State, FAMU and TCC gathered to show their solidarity to the protesters at wall street and across the nation and to voice their dissatisfaction too.

The occupation is not a phase. Sure it takes inspiration from the Arab uprising and they definitely don’t have a leader, their demands are very simplistic. The media keeps either feigning ignorance over the ordeal or tries to prove that the people protesting are street bums, but the truth is that we are experiencing America’s first Internet-era movement which does not take its origination from a leader.

The amazing thing about the Occupy Tallahassee gathering that I went to was that they were all young people. Young educated people, the same age as me. Yes some of them were in for the fun of it and there were countless calls to call for the legalizing of marijuana among other things, But it needs to be realised that most of them were really passionate about what they were calling for. A protest like this, gave a sense of purpose and excitement even to me. There were people who explained to me and others how the american economy works, about the disparity, about the centralized interest-bearing currency…it was a whole cycle of educating one another.

I wish that people in Pakistan would actually try to take inspiration from such movements and try to end all the shit that we are currently embroiled into…we have an even worse case of economic and social disparity, political disturbances and the terrorism threat but the youth, the educated, the working people, our 99% are still silent. But how long will this silence prevail? are we really so tolerant that we can keep on taking every muck thrown at us right on the face, without a single protest? where is our cry for change?

At these occupation demonstrations, I am calling for an end to illegal warfare and drone attacks in countries like Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan…

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wanna-be-pulao (A pakistani rice/chicken pilaf)

I am not as awesome as the spice spoon. I can’t cook as well as my mom. My best recipe is of microwaved ramen with chat masala and honey…

Cooking as a college student sucks. firstly, the very fact that you don’t have time to make anything at all. secondly and most importantly, cooking on a budget. You need to ensure that the ingredients for all your recipes overlap, so that

1) you aren’t spending too much on stuff you would use only once.

2) don’t have enough house space to keep all the ingredients in.( I don’t think Americans appreciate the smell of desi spices wafting through the house either, if you have american roomates..DON’T)

3) it all comes back to time…time is precious and something, if you are a college student like me, would spend on catching up with all the missed sleep.

therefore right now I keep coming up with recipes which last long(quantity wise), cost less, taste better and take the minimum amount of time 😀

Pulao is something I want to master. It is my favorite Pakistani dish, it’s the perfect condiment to a summer’s afternoon. It is extremely low-key,fat and spice content wise. This week I had chicken and rice at my place and I ended up fusing everything I had in my house to make a wanna-be-pulao.

The following recipe has only been tested out once. It could possibly be some one-hit-wonder recipe.

Ingredients (for 1 person)

1cup rice (soaked) 

2 chicken breast fillets( diced)

1/2 large onion

4 cloves garlic

ginger

2 green chilis

1 stick cinnamon

cloves (6)

shan chicken tikka masala

lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

In a saucepan(the only cooking pot in our house), I heated approximately 2 tbsp of oil, and then added the onions, garlic, chilies, ginger to it. when the onion became a bit translucent I added the cloves and the cinnamon stick along with the chicken and shan chicken tikka masala. Let the chicken cook for a bit and become a little tender. Then add the lemon juice, followed by the rice. for 1 cup rice, I added 2 cups of water. Cover the saucepan with a lid for approximately   or till the rice soaks up the water. Tada!

P.S I usually add the salt and pepper after cooking the food…also, My mother says that I should have covered the lid with a cloth, it helps with the steaming! Again my description says that it is a rice pilaf, however I did not use stock of any kind because I did not have any, but if you substitute the water with chicken stock or whatever stock you prefer, it comes out amazing!

Anyways it tasted really good and it was a good change from the ramen and its easy to cook 😀

I will bring in more recipes later…however this is not going to turn into a food blog.

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