Gourmand Chic


Have you ever had one of those days where you crave shawarma?  I had one of those days.  Two things made me go in search for this uniquely tasty Arabic sandwich.  First reason, I had a really yummy one during my last trip to Canada.  Second reason, I had watched The Avengers and at the end when they all went to eat shawarma, I could almost smell it.  My stomach grumbled and lamented to me for weeks before I finally decided I could not wait any longer.


I checked Yelp and Googled various places and the general consensus was that Papa Hassan’s Grill was the best place to go in Orange County.  Wasn’t too far from where I lived so I decided to be adventurous and have lunch there.


As soon as I walked in I saw this.  The aroma of the meat was not helping me in the hunger…

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Ladybug is flying!


Hey lovies!
Hope you’re doing well, thank you for “liking” and following my journal, it really gives me a lot of motivation to continue, not to mention that I discovered some pretty amazing people and blogs as well! I know, today is Valentine, but now it’s late and anyway, I don’t care…:) I went up to my good friend A, who made an amazing dinner, then just laid a bit, then came home.
I will tell you about yesterday, since I didn’t tell you anything about the interview and the rest of the day which was pretty busy… First, the interview went well, unfortunately didn’t choose me for today, but I was quickly over it because I accepted that was not my fault, I did the best I could, and that’s all. After the interview I headed to another interview for a job at the best local model agency, and…

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The Middle East and Beyond

I haven’t written much recently for various reasons, but the primarily because language learning isn’t as romantic or eventful as it initially seems it would be.

It is a fascinating and infuriating experience all at the same time. Progress seems so certain yet so elusive. Whenever you feel you have something “down,” you just have to wait a few days (or hours) to see the irony of that misconception. Eventually you look back and realize that you can say more than you used to be able to say, you’re just not really sure how.

The beginnings of language learning are always so exciting. You’re learning how to greet people, introduce yourself, and order food (and the essentials like finding the bathroom). You feel smart, capable, and charming. Many native speakers appreciate your (admittedly horrible) attempts at speaking and life just feels good.

And then you realize that you actually can’t…

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My relationship with Arabic is one of puzzled yearning.

Every small triumph (reading a road sign or assuring the taxi driver that the weather is in fact nice) is followed almost instantly by the realisation that I am still far from the object of my desire.

The road that takes one from flirting with Arabic to moving in together is a long and winding one.

Spoken Arabic has such an abundance of synonyms you can never be sure you have used the right word for “nice” for example. Is it nice nice or just a bit nice or mainly nice or a quarter good and three quarters nice?

Three sophisticated, versatile linguistic beasts I particularly love are:

1. Yallah – Literally “come on” but wonderfully complex in use. “Let’s move on” or “I’m bored” or “Ok, we’re clear” or “Hey, you”, “Oh, you’re here”  or even “Blimey!” with the right…

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Ok, so none of you know that I’ve been learning arabic for the past few months. I’ve got to the point where I can join up my letters!! Anyhoo, I wanted to treat the other half to some traditional arabic food because we are constantly craving it.
I made some hummus, some falafel and arabic bread (or pitta if you want to be technical). Hummus was made from a big tin of chickpeas, some tahini, and some lemon juice. The falafel was a packet mix :S I know I cheated!! And the pitta breads were made from scratch; I put flour, water and yeast in my bread machine to form a dough. I then shaped them into round circles and fried them on a griddle pan. 
All of it has come to under £3… And I reckon we’ll have some hummus left over (not sure about the falafel!!)

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Xpat Dive Guide

Learning Arabic can be daunting!  I toyed with the idea of taking formal lessons where I’d learn to read and write Arabic letters but after one go with the Rosetta Stone language program I gave it up!  Egyptian Arabic has it’s own vernacular that is reported to be the most widely understood form of Arabic.  It’s a bit different than the Rosetta Language program so I decided to concentrate on learning the language verbally and in it’s text and social media friendly Latin letter form:  Franco Arabic.  Franco Arabic is very helpful for taking notes and keeping a dictionary without having to learn a completely foreign alphabet.  Franco Arabic is also a great way to remember pronunciation as there are letters in Arabic that do not equate to anything in the Latin alphabet.    Eventually when my vocabulary is a bit better, I would like to learn to…

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Cleopatra's Granddaughter

Knowing that spending more time writing and updating should be my one and only priority, I apologize for my always delayed updates and I’ll work hard to fix that.

Now I wanted to officially introduce my lovely daughters;

Blog: Ask Me in Arabic which went online last year and I’m looking for some help and building a team right now to keep it running.

Blog: More Than Men; in My Life which is a short stories collection of love, relationship, spirituality and life. It’s still in prograss and I hope you will like them.

I won’t take much of your precious times to talk ’bout my daughters but wait for them please. ^^

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A very light and delicious dish you can prepare easily at home and serve as an appetizer or side dish. I will post later how to make the yogurt cheese for the filling. 


Yogurt Cheese

Diced Onion

One Cup of Flour

Half Cup of Water

2 tbsp of Vegetable Oil 

Salt and Pepper

Frying Oil

How to Prepare:

Prepare your dough by mixing the flour, vegetable oil, salt and warm water, then kneed the mixture until it forms a dough. Let it rest for 30 minutes.

For the filling, mix the yogurt cheese, diced onion, salt and pepper.


Take a small piece of the dough and use a rolling pin to flatten the dough (put some flour on the rolling pin and surface so the dough does not stick) in a circular shape – about two inches in circumference.

Take one tablespoon of the cheese mixture and place in the middle of…

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Rivers of Hope

Pieces of a meteorite are seen in a laboratory in Yekaterinburg on Monday, Feb.18, 2013.
AP Photo/ The Urals Federal University Press Service, Alexander Khlopotov

From amateur astronomers to space junk traders to Canadian satellites makers to dashboard cam enthusiasts, the flaming Russian Meteorite has captivated the whole planet by offering a little something for everyone. Never in the history of things falling out of the sky, have people been so excited about a simple chondrite that’s 10 percent metallic iron and nickel alloy.

Almost immediately after the10-ton space rock burned up in the skies over Chelyabinsk, Russia, on Friday enterprising rock hounds began offering pieces of the meteorite for sale online. Some were asking as much $10,000, but as always when buying souvenirs that can easily be mistaken for regular old Earth rocks, let the buyer beware. We know it’s hard to believe that someone operating an anonymous auction out of Central Russia might not be on the up-and-up, but best to consult your local…

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