Friday, 26 July 2013

Marrakech: Lulu's 21st.

The other week Lulu took eight of us on a magical 4 day trip to Marrakech. It was amazing I cannot thank her and her family enough for such a special time.

We arrived early in the morning Tuesday. The riad was with Pure Riads and we stayed in Riad Adore it was so luxurious!

Lulu and I stayed in the Bahia Suite, just when I thought it couldn't get any more luxurious! All the rooms were gorgeous, the decor of the whole riad has been so well thought out.   

The pool was such a good edition as it was around 45 degrees when we were there so coming back from the markets and having a dip in the plunge pool was perfect.

We had dinner on this roof terrace on the first night, the food at the riad is amazing, the favorite among the group was defiantly the aubergine dish. I am going to hunt it out and make it soon!

As I mentioned it was super hot while we were there and so as well as providing a towel they also provide sunhats. Such a nice thoughtful edition.

We had breakfast on one of the riad's roof terraces each morning. It included either pancakes or french toast. With pastries, bread, fruit, yoghurt, juice and tea or coffee. Such a good breakfast to fill us up for the day ahead. 

On Wednesday we went to the markets and souks. Some of the girls got henna in the market, the ladies that do it are so quick and it costs around 20dr/£1.55. 

The souks are full of everything you can imagine. You have to barter which I'm didn't really like but by the end of the holiday I had got more confident in asking for a low price and got some good deals (I think). 

We also went to a restaurant that is also a riad called le jardin it was magical and I would defiantly recommend going for dinner there while in Marrakech. 

On the Thursday we got up and got a taxi to go camel riding it was reasonably priced around £11 for half an hour. 

On the Friday we went to Jardin Majorelle, a garden that was originally owned by Jacques Majorelle but when he passed away Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Berge acquired the garden and restored it and the property to how it looks today. 

I love the blue colour that is on the buildings, walls and pots of the garden. 

We went home Friday evening after a great few days here are some photos of what I bought and roughly how much I paid for it. I'm really pleased with what I bought and hope you like it all too!

Clockwise from top, I bought a glass and metal large jar, any ideas what to put in it would be appreciated! 

Next I bought a small glass jar that I am going to put matches in and put sand paper on the bottom in order to light the match. I bought this for about £1.55/20dr. 
I bought this metal box as I loved the desks and tables in the riad made of the same design but couldn't bring something that big home with me so settled on the jewelry box. 150dr/£11

I bought a metal tray to keep my perfumes on this was 150dr/£11. Her originally wanted me to pay 550dr but I got him down to 150dr. 
I also bought the striped bowl I keep lip balm, hair ties and grips in here. 60dr/£4

I bought this leather belt and also got him to put an extra whole in it so that I can wear it at my waist as well as on the hips. 80dr/£6

Lastly I bought this metal tray to keep my jewelry on that I take off at night to stop it rolling away. 80dr/£6


Monday, 22 July 2013

Indian Food: Chicken Tikka, Bombay Aloo and Dahl.

It was my Dad's birthday on Sunday and so I made us an curry to celebrate. I made three things. Chicken tikka, Bombay aloo (spicy potatoes) and dahl (mild lentil curry).

To make the chicken tikka for four you will need:
1 pint of natural yoghurt.
1 tablespoon cumin.
1 tablespoon garam masala.
1 teaspoon turmeric.
1 teaspoon chilli powder.
3 teaspoons lemon juice.
8 cloves of garlic.
1 inch of peeled grated ginger.
Coriander to garnish.
4 Chicken breasts.
Few drops of red food colouring (optional).

Make this the day before you will need it.

Pour the yoghurt into a large bowl.

Add all the dried spices, garlic, ginger and lemon juice and mix.

Add some red food colouring (teaspoon)

Add the chicken breast chopped into chunks. Leave overnight to marinate.

Put the chunks onto skewers. Put the oven up to its highest heat and wait until the oven has reached this temperature. Put the chicken tikka on a wire rack and leave in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

Next up are the potatoes. (this made leftovers too because we had so many other things to eat).
3 medium large potatoes.
1 inch of peeled grated ginger. 
1 teaspoon mustard seeds.
1 teaspoon turmeric.
1 teaspoon cumin.
1 teaspoon chilli powder. 
small handful of fresh coriander.
1 tablespoon of tomato puree.
3 red onions.
2 dessertspoons of vegetable oil.

Peel and slice the potatoes and boil for around 10 minutes.

Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds and cumin. Heat until the mustard seeds start to pop and then reduce the heat slightly.  

Add the ginger, onions sliced and tomato puree and fry lightly for 5 minutes. 

Then add the rest of the spices and then the boiled potatoes.

Stir and fry on a low to medium heat for a further 5 minutes and then add fresh coriander. Mix and serve. 

Finally the dahl. Again this made way more than we needed I reckon would serve six. But we are just going to have leftovers tomorrow. :)

To make the dahl you will need:
500g yellow lentils.
1 large tomato.
2 bay leaves.
1 teaspoon chilli powder.
1 fresh red chilli.
2 cloves of minced garlic.
1 teaspoon of salt.
1 inch peeled grated ginger.
1/2 teaspoon turmeric.
1 teaspoon cumin.
2 dessertspoons of vegetable oil. 
Handful of fresh coriander.

First rinse the lentils. Soak them in water and keep changing it until the water is clear. 

Once the lentil water is clear drain the lentils into a pan. Cover with fresh water. While cooking ensure the lentils are topped up with water so that they don't dry out. Boil with the salt and simmer for 20 minutes.

Then add the ginger, bay leaves, fresh chilli and chopped tomato. 

Continue to simmer for a further 10 minutes. 

Then heat the oil and add the cumin, turmeric, chilli powder and garlic. Lightly fry for 2 minutes.

Stir in the Spiced oil and cook for another 30 minutes, then add the fresh chopped coriander and serve.

I think everything turned out really well! Happy Birthday Dad!

I served this with onion bhajis, naan bread and rice that were bought from the supermarket.