Hi! I just wanted everyone to know that Mia Mangos has officially moved and changed its name! Come check out Mia & Pup! See you there!
As I mentioned during Coffee Breaks, Arabic coffee has a taste all its own. It is one of those tastes that builds on you until you have acquired quite a love for it. I don’t know what I loved about it more, the taste or the history. While we were sitting under the stars during a special trip to a bedouin camp just outside Abu Dhabi, I watched closely as our hosts followed the ancient recipe. It seemed something out of a fairy tale for me. I have always had an intense interest in the Middle East and its culture, so this was a definite high point for me. As we listened to the stories of a life that seems so distant to the glittering lifestyle Abu Dhabi exhibits today, I could feel a connection to that past. We enjoyed the coffee and conversation, and I wrote it all down as my dear friend told me the process of making Arabic coffee-UAE style.
Only in complete silence, you will hear the desert. – Bedouin Proverb
Recipe | Arabic Coffee (UAE Style)
You will need:
- Dallah (Arabic coffee pot) — Or use your own coffee pot
- Finjaan (Arabic coffee cup) — Or use your own espresso cups
- 3/4 cup Arabica beans (ground)
- 1/3 cup cardamom (ground)
- 1/2 liter of water
- Optional seasonings: saffron, cloves, rose water, etc.
- Serve with: Dates
- Boil your water on the stove in a saucepan.
- Add the ground beans straight into the boiling water.
- Boil for about 10-15 minutes. You should start seeing small bubbles on the top.
- Add the cardamom directly into the mixture. Let this boil for another 5-8 minutes. This is also when you can add your other optional flavorings.
- Remove from heat and let sit for 1-2 minutes.
- Pour your mixture through a sieve into your dallah (or coffee pot).
- Serve your coffee in the finjaan to your guests (or use a small espresso cup) with dates on the side for a sweet treat.
Let me know how your recipes turned out.
As a vegetarian, it can be difficult to find meals that work for us both (Derek is not vegetarian). I don’t cook meat, and, even if I did, I would have no clue if it was something that would need a warning before serving. Therefore, I stick to meals I can taste test. This first recipe was a bit of an experiment, but it turned out to be delicious! These patties are yummy as typical “burgers” or on salads. Be creative! In the future, I want to try these on a creamy polenta, but I need to up my skills before attempting that.
Recipe | Black Bean + Sweet Potato Patties
- 2 sweet potatoes, cubed and peeled
- 1 egg
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced (I usually add more, but I’m a garlic fiend.)
- 3/4 cup corn
- 1 1/2 cup black beans
- 1 cup quinoa (cooked) or oats
- 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper (Substitute 2 diced jalapenos if you are feeling spicy!)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
- Boil the sweet potatoes until soft.
- Mash the potatoes in a large bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix together.
- Form the patties.
- Bake the patties for 20-30 minutes. (Flip once)
- Serve as you prefer and enjoy!
My favorite additions:
- Sliced Avocado
- Red Onions
- Hot sauce
Mendoza, Argentina is famous for its wines, specifically for its Malbecs. Therefore, touring the bodegas (wineries) in Maipu was a top item on the list for our visit. Many people opt to rent cars, join a tour group, or hop on the vans, but we decided to rent bicycles. We met some pretty fantastic people at Alamo Hostel & Suites, so we decided to join forces. I would love to hug the person who invented the idea of wine tours on bikes, because it was the perfect way to customize it to our individual tastes. We weren’t bound by a strict schedule or itinerary, which made it more relaxed and personal.
You may think a vineyard is a vineyard, right? Wrong! Each destination offered something unique. They all had their own aesthetics and evinced different feelings and vibes. The newer vineyards were modern, laid back, and usually had the best meals.
^ Tempus Alba–Best Lunch ^
^ Mevi–Best Deal ^
The older vineyards were the places to go for quality tours and tastings. They also proved to be the best bet for improving our knowledge about the different varietals.
All of the places we visited had something unique, and Derek and I ended up dabbling across the board. He ended up loving a spicy Cabernet, while I couldn’t get enough of the Malbecs! (Oh, and the Dulce de Leche liquor from Tierra de Lobo!) What’s your favorite wine or spirit?