Archive | May 2012

What’s for Dinner: Chicken Tikka

If you know me, it’s no surprise to you that over the past year or so I’ve began to LOVE to cook. Not only do I enjoy cooking, but I like to try and make new and different things… that are EASY to make!

I may love cooking, but I do not like spending HOURS in the kitchen.

Over the last week or so, post Ami’s surgery, I’ve made food on pretty much a daily basis… as opposed to when I feel like making something (or want to try a new recipe). Coming up with something to make everyday has been a challenge… because I don’t like just make the usual same old stuff.

Today, I literally opened up the pantry and stared at it for a while hoping for inspiration. When that failed, I went to my laptop and looked through the MANY recipes I have saved… again hoping for inspiration. Nothing.  So I went down, threw in the usual spices I use to grill my chicken on my George Foreman Grill (easily my most used appliance in the kitchen).

This time, however, I cut the chicken breast into thin strips, and skewered them. I didn’t grill it, BBQ it, or bake it… I simply broiled it. I tested one out first because I wasn’t sure how it would turn out:

And let me tell you, it was AMAZING!

P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes.

Organ Donation (in Islam)

Every now and then (for over a few years), I’ve been engaged in a conversation (or debate… whatever you want to call it) on whether or not organ donation is permissible in Islam.

Each time, the conversation and/or debate would conclude without an answer — just both sides very stubbornly attached to their argument. While it is nice that each side was so passionate about it just as I am, I left each time not getting an answer.

One of the biggest arguments against organ donation in Islam I have heard is that the human body [and therefore all the organs of a human body whether one is a Muslim or a non-Muslim] is sacred and must not be tampered with. Another argument I have heard, and it applies to any topic actually, is that when the evidence for either side isn’t clear cut, it is better to be on the side of caution.

I see both sides of the argument, but at the end of the day I just did not understand how something that could potentially save the life/lives of other(s) would not be permissible. Especially that, if it is okay to receive an organ transplant, why wouldn’t it be okay to donate?

Feel free to add more to either side of the argument.

Last week, when I went with my mom for her pre-testing for her procedure/minor surgery later this week… they asked about whether she would like to be an organ donor (which is a standard question they ask at hospitals amongst many others). That, of course, brought me right back to the debate over organ donation.

This time, however, I took a more hands on approach. I did a lot of research online. The research I did on my own guided me a little closer, but I did not find a definite answer.

I was reaffirmed in the fact that it is permissible to donate an organ when one is alive as long as it doesn’t cause harm/death to the donor. I wasn’t, however, able to find a consistent answer for cases after an individual’s death.

Finally, I contacted someone who I thought would be able to shed some light on the matter for me. Fortunately, he gave me the contact information for someone who was able to help me.

A part of the answer I was given was:

This is one of the contemporary questions for which the jurists have yet to find a compellingly decisive response.  So your research has delivered you to the correct answer: that there is no hard and fast rule.  Being that the jurists are in dispute about it, the common Muslim is not to be held accountable, whichever opinion he or she takes.

He went on to say that which ever stance one decides to take, must be supported.

If you click here, you can read both sides of the argument. I am sure you can do your own research, but this is one of the best links I found that discussed both sides of the issue.

What’s for Dinner: Grilled Tilapia

While I usually fry Tilapia as that is the way my family likes it the best, this particular day I didn’t have a few of the main ingredients I normally use.

Instead, I decided to throw some random spices in and grill it on our George Foreman Grill (which, by the way, I LOVE!).

P.S. This post is a part of my “What’s for Dinner” series, where I share what I’ve been cooking and my recipes. Grab and share my button:



You see the Lego box below?

It’s from our (my siblings and mine) childhood. Our parents bought it for us back in 1991 — yes that’s 21 years old — and almost as old as me!! We played countless hours with the set, building everything imaginable. We wore out the blocks, the people, and the board to build on a very long time ago.

Then, for many years, it sat in the back of our closets as we grew too old to play with it.

In the last few years, however, it has made a comeback! As our little cousins grew older, they started playing with it more and more (because  let’s face it — we don’t have many other toys in our house).

Now, our young nephews and niece are quite fond of it as well and play with it every time they come over. It’s so funny because it’s the first thing they ask about as soon as they come to our house (if they don’t just go find it themselves, that is!). They are even more pleased to find that what they built in their last visit is usually still in the box too.

I keep telling my family that we need to buy more toys now that there are so many little kids in the family again (in the next generation especially!), but at the end of the day it seems that they all seem to enjoy playing with the Legos that WE played with many many years ago.

The pieces may be worn out, and parts missing… but it doesn’t seem to hinder their imaginations one bit.

It’s so much fun to see what my little cousins and niece & nephews end up making — from houses, and cars to angry bird — they have probably made it all.

A couple of years ago, my little cousin even said to us that ‘we really need to get new Legos“. Maybe he’s right. We may not need many other toys for them to play with, but a new set of Legos might just be what is needed.

In a time when things are made not to last too long, it is so nice and sentimental to think about how we used to play with the same set growing up when we watch our younger cousins and niece & nephews play with it.

Very few things stay constant from one generation to the next. Most of the things we grew up with are a thing of the past for kids nowadays — they wouldn’t recognize it most likely — just like we probably wouldn’t recognize the TV shows they watch or the toys that are a hit now (or from our parents’ time)… so it’s so nice to see things that still connect one generation to the next.

In this case, a simple box of Legos.

A handful of legos: In this picture you can see that the green base to build things on  is broken :(, but the other  pieces are relatively in good shape. That yellow and red window is still in one piece and functional :).