Target Gift Guide For Her

Target Gift Guide For Her

I’ve been missing for a couple weeks from the blog just trying to figure out how a lot of the linking of products works and toggling through other changes.  But I’m back now, just in time for all the holiday festivities and I’ve come back to you with an awesome small Gift Guide for all the ladies in your life you know the moms, daughters, sisters, sister-in-laws, teachers, co-workers, or even simply for YOU! I’m guilty (hope the hubby doesn’t read this) I ended up purchasing a couple products from this guide myself! The temptation was strong as I was writing up all the descriptions and linking the items to this post.  And what mom leaves Target without buying something?!

Speaking of linking items, this is my first gift guide and as an avid reader of many blogs on the Internet I always loved seeing the gift guides for the holidays that influencers posted but I never realized how much work is put into putting these guides together and linking the items.  I wanted to thank you all for the support by reading along.  Also, if any of the products are of interest simply click the image link in the grid below and purchase the product.  If you purchase the product through the link I’ve provided I get a small credit for putting this all together! And as a new blogger your support would be greatly appreciated, so Thank You!

Target is always such a great option for budget friendly buys from kitchen necessities, clothing, accessories, or tech gadgets. So here goes it… Here is my Gift Guide for Her… I’ve added a brief description on each item.

Gift Guide For Her

Yankee Candle
Pajama Set
Instant Pot
Mittens
Womens Cozy Plush Robe
Hello Gorgeous Mug
Faux Fur Slippers
Beats Wireless Headphones
OTK Boots – Target
Wool Duffel Coat – Target

Yankee Candle-  Coming from a Pakistani family where the smell of the curry pretty much seeps into your jackets, clothes and hair I’ve always been paranoid and invested in good scents for the home and Yankee Candle has never disappointed! It smells so crisp and strong enough to cover the smell of curries so this is your buy if you want to gift a candle

Pajama Set- Gilligan & O’Malley is one of the softest set of loungewear that Target carries.  I basically lived in their loungewear and pajamas when I was expecting.

Instant Pot- This sweet thing has been the talk of the town! Meals are prepped way faster. If you have kids and you have to cook meat don’t spend hours thawing the meat and then cooking it. Pressure cookers were always a concern for my mom so she instilled this fear in us and maybe the fact that one bursted in our kitchen when we were kids probably has a little something to do with my fear of them too! But with toddlers around I need something thats safer and a set-and-go and this is just that! It releases the pressure on its own so no time tracking or any hassle!

Sherpa Mittins- Soft and cute! Perfect stocking stuffers too!

Plush Robe- I’m telling you, you can’t go wrong with Gilligan O’ Malley, this robe is so soft and cozy!

Wool Coat- This wool coat is almost a knock off of the one at JCrew. It’s so cute and I love the red color for this time of year. It’s been selling fast!!

Faux Fur Slippers- Yes, Please! Need I say more, faux fur and slippers!! Get a feel of actually walking on cloud nine with these slippers perfect for gifting!

Hello Gorgeous Mug- This is too cute, who wouldn’t want to wake up to a cup of coffee praising them!

Beats Solo Headphone- These are probably the priciest item on this gift guide. Definitely a splurge but so worth the buy! The sound of music on these headphones takes you to a different level. And if you’re a mom like me sometimes you just need a pair of headphones to block it all out so you can binge watch some TV in peace! Best gift my husband got me!!

OTK Boots- I was a little hesitant to try a pair of OTK boots this fall because I am short and another influencer convinced me its okay to be short you can still pull off the style.  But I didn’t want to invest in a pair that was super pricey just in case I didn’t like the style but these ended up being the nicest OTK Boots ever and oh so comfortable!! They are less than $45 right now!!

I hope this little gift guide helps you in finding the perfect gift for the special lady in your life whether it be your mom, mom-in-law, sister, teacher, grandma, etc. I tried to add variety in cost and in the selection of items. This was my first gift guide so comment below and let me know what you think! What are some things on your holiday list this year? Are gift guides helpful to you?

Monday Musings

Monday Musings

We survived last weeks sugar high. Halloween was a success we managed to cover just our street and it was good enough for the boys to get an idea of trick-or-treating. Ray woke up at 7 am the next day thinking it’s going to be Halloween everyday and insisting on going trick-or-treating.  That took some explaining but I think he gets that Halloween is just once a year! JJ is still obsessed with all the Halloween nursery rhymes and keeps asking me to play “Punkin Halloween” (5 Little Pumpkins).

The weekend flew right before our eyes as we had spurs of pouring rain and then some sun.  A little snow in the higher altitude regions lead to a beautiful view of snow-capped mountains this got me all excited about the holidays and I started getting ideas of holiday décor for our home I have a post coming this week of some of my favorite Amazon deals.  I am way eager to get a tree up and start decorating but I’ll wait for another couple weeks. As for now…I want to dive into some recipe books and get some delicious recipes out before Thanksgiving!

Every year for the past couple years as tradition my husband and my sister both cook a thanksgiving turkey.  My husband loves to marinate his Turkey with our traditional spices he loves to give it a very traditional Pakistani taste.  My sister on the other hand cooks her Turkey with a classic American marination she has a special recipe she hasn’t shared but she does the whole shebang with mouth watering stuffing and cranberry sauce. Both Turkeys are devoured!!

I love to get into the Thanksgiving spirit by some holiday decor, kitchen essentials, and making sure the kids enjoy the holiday as well. My little Ray loves to help in the kitchen and so I’ve linked some of my favorite items for toddlers and kitchen must-haves for the food festivities found on Amazon! And if you’re a prime member on Amazon you can get free two day delivery which is amazing! Since becoming a prime member I’ve been so spoiled standard delivery at many retail stores takes 5-7 business days which seems like a lifetime away after you’ve reaped the benefits of being a Amazon Prime member!

Here is my roundup of Amazons must-haves for Thanksgiving (you can simply click on any item and purchase)…

Here is my roundup of Amazons Thanksgiving must-haves for your toddler! These fun must-haves will keep them entertained and help them join you in the cooking fun!! (to purchase any of the items simply click on the images and purchase)

What are some of your Thanksgiving traditions? What are some of the items you find necessary on Thanksgiving day in the kitchen? Feel free to share in the comments below.

I hope you all have a wonderful week! How many of you have started decorating for Christmas already?

Pomegranate & Pear Salad

Pomegranate & Pear Salad
This salad is the perfect addition to your holiday menu, I made this for Thanksgiving dinner. The salad and the Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing is the perfect combination of sweet and sour flavors I crave during the holidays. I enjoyed making it because with kids it’s really simple and quick to make. I was on a time crunch to get both boys ready for Thanksgiving dinner and of course Ray decided to throw a full on tantrum because he didn’t want to wear his shoes and jacket. After a battle fought there he decided to dirty his diaper right before getting into the car. And not to mention the fiasco before that scenario the hubby can’t decide what to wear and asks for a hand picked outfit. At this point I have yet to shower, do my hair and make-up and prep this salad as well. So when life is as chaotic as it is you do what you can and give it your best shot, and so Voilà I present to you the Pomegranate and Pear Salad…
IMG_5936.JPG
There are a variety of recipes for this same salad but I chose to keep it simple and avoid any peanuts and pecans because of allergies in our family. Here is the recipe…
Ingredients
For the Salad
  • 3 medium pears, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 16 ounces salad green
  • Seeds from 1 large pomegranate
For the Vinaigrette Dressing
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 Vinegar
  • 1 Tbs Mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
Salad Preparation Steps:
  1. To prepare Balsamic Vinaigrette, measure all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  2. Cut the pear slices and sprinkle them with a little lemon juice or a fresh lemon. This is to avoid the pear slices from turning brown.
  3. Cut the Cucumbers first in half then thinly slice
  4. Cut the Pomegranate in two halves and place in bowl with water. This makes it easier to take the seeds out and helps to avoid pomegranate juice stains from going all over as you take the seeds out. Another method to take the seeds out of the pomegranate is to cut it in half and hit the half with a teaspoon and the seeds fall out (this method takes too long for me but it’s worth a try).
  5. In a desired salad bowl, layer salad greens, pear slices, Cucumber slices and pomegranate seeds.
  6. Right before serving the salad mix the prepped Balsamic Vinaigrette well and mix the desired amount to the salad bowl. Mix the salad and vinaigrette mixture until salad ingredients are evenly coated.
I hope you enjoy this simple and easy Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette! To add more flavor to the salad simply add a cheese of preference, you can even add walnuts, pecans, or almonds. One recipe suggested adding garlic powder or fresh minced garlic to the dressing. I would love to know what variety of ingredients you tried and how yours turned out!
Xoxo,
NM

Pomegranate & Pear Salad

Pomegranate & Pear Salad
This salad is the perfect addition to your holiday menu, I made this for Thanksgiving dinner. The salad and the Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing is the perfect combination of sweet and sour flavors I crave during the holidays. I enjoyed making it because with kids it’s really simple and quick to make. I was on a time crunch to get both boys ready for Thanksgiving dinner and of course Ray decided to throw a full on tantrum because he didn’t want to wear his shoes and jacket. After a battle fought there he decided to dirty his diaper right before getting into the car. And not to mention the fiasco before that scenario the hubby can’t decide what to wear and asks for a hand picked outfit. At this point I have yet to shower, do my hair and make-up and prep this salad as well. So when life is as chaotic as it is you do what you can and give it your best shot, and so Voilà I present to you the Pomegranate and Pear Salad…
IMG_5936.JPG
There are a variety of recipes for this same salad but I chose to keep it simple and avoid any peanuts and pecans because of allergies in our family. Here is the recipe…
Ingredients
For the Salad
  • 3 medium pears, thinly sliced
  • 2 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 16 ounces salad green
  • Seeds from 1 large pomegranate
For the Vinaigrette Dressing
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 Vinegar
  • 1 Tbs Mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
Salad Preparation Steps:
  1. To prepare Balsamic Vinaigrette, measure all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  2. Cut the pear slices and sprinkle them with a little lemon juice or a fresh lemon. This is to avoid the pear slices from turning brown.
  3. Cut the Cucumbers first in half then thinly slice
  4. Cut the Pomegranate in two halves and place in bowl with water. This makes it easier to take the seeds out and helps to avoid pomegranate juice stains from going all over as you take the seeds out. Another method to take the seeds out of the pomegranate is to cut it in half and hit the half with a teaspoon and the seeds fall out (this method takes too long for me but it’s worth a try).
  5. In a desired salad bowl, layer salad greens, pear slices, Cucumber slices and pomegranate seeds.
  6. Right before serving the salad mix the prepped Balsamic Vinaigrette well and mix the desired amount to the salad bowl. Mix the salad and vinaigrette mixture until salad ingredients are evenly coated.
I hope you enjoy this simple and easy Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette! To add more flavor to the salad simply add a cheese of preference, you can even add walnuts, pecans, or almonds. One recipe suggested adding garlic powder or fresh minced garlic to the dressing. I would love to know what variety of ingredients you tried and how yours turned out!
Xoxo,
NM

Asian Fusion Grilled Chicken

Asian Fusion Grilled Chicken

The most difficult question of the day has to be “what should I cook today?”.  Once that hurdle is crossed cooking is always a breeze for me.  I am so bored of cooking and eating the same food on a routine basis; the typical south asian Aloo Gosht (potato and meat mixed curry), Aloo Keema (ground beef and potato curry), and chicken curry. My sister Mona introduced me to Food Fusion which is now officially my go-to website for finding south asian recipe’s to cook at home.

Food Fusion recipe’s give you the south asian taste in the food without using boxed spices (Shan Masala). And for our family recipe’s through Food & Wine magazine or online are too bland for the hubby even though I usually love those recipes. Here is the Grilled Fish recipe off of Food Fusion I cooked today.

INGREDIENTS:

  • Fish boneless fillets ½ kg
  • Red chili crushed 1 tsp
  • Carom seeds ½ tsp
  • Salt 1 tsp or to taste
  • Coriander seeds crushed 1 tsp
  • Red chili powder 1 & ½ tsp or to taste
  • Black pepper crushed 1 tsp
  • Garlic & Ginger Paste ½ tbs
  • Lemon juice 2-3 tbs
  • Butter 3 tbs
  • Minced Garlic 1 tsp

COOKING STEPS:

1.) In fish, add red chili crushed, carom seeds, salt, coriander seeds, red chili powder, black pepper crushed, ginger garlic paste and lemon juice, mix well & marinate for 1 hour.

2.) On medium to low heat in grill pan, add butter and let it melt, add minced garlic and mix well.

3.) Add marinated fish and cook on low flame until done (3-4 minutes each side).

Once cooked garnish with a little cilantro and preferred veggies…. and Voilà! This recipe took a total of 30 minutes to prepare and cook, not including the hour of marinating the fish. Its a simple recipe yet so scrumptious!

Enjoy,

Kitty

Classic Pakistani Pulao

Classic Pakistani Pulao

Growing up I would be eating a bag of Doritos, a couple Fruit Roll-Ups, and a pack or two of Dunkaroos (yes, 90s kids, you know how addicting those cinnamon gram crackers with frosting were!) ALL the time. If it weren’t for my mother I would be eating those for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  Being the youngest of five girls I admit I would get away with a lot but when it came to my health and my diet my mother wouldn’t show an ounce of leniency.

Being the picky eater I was it had become routine for my mom to ask me before any conversation one of the three questions; What do you want to eat? Did you eat? When was your last meal? It wasn’t that I had any dietary issues or restrictions besides that I was lactose intolerant which was diagnosed at a much later age (The diagnosis is a funny story to be shared another time) but I was simply a very picky eater. I had a strict policy no milk, no meat, nothing that looked or smelled weird according to my taste. I admit, I put my mother through hell. But alas when Karma hits you its hits you hard, my son Ray is another version of me when it comes to his diet.  If it has to do with Nutella or fries he’s game anything else is debatable and there’s a self inflicted strict no meat policy for him. Food has to look presentable and smell just as good as it has to taste according to his likings.

After much research, trial and error, and tips from my mother I have started making a traditional rice dish called, Pulao. In simple terms Pulao is rice cooked in beef or chicken broth with added herbs and spices.  On most days Ray will enjoy eating rice even if its plain white rice.  So to add a little nutrition I researched that using this Pulao recipe the nutrients extracted from the meat and bone broth end up in the broth and hence are initially in the rice. Nutrients such as the protein and sugars, calcium, potassium, and many other nutrients hidden in the bone marrow are all absorbed into the rice.

INGREDIENTS:

  • Mutton or Chicken
  • 1 cup Basmati rice
  • 3 Black Peppers
  • 1 Black cardamom
  • 2 Cloves
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp ginger & garlic paste
  • 2 medium sliced onions
  • Cooking Oil

Cooking Steps:

1.) Soak Basmati Rice for 15-20 minutes

2.) Heat Cooking Oil on medium heat and add thinly sliced onions

3.) Once onions are golden brown add ginger & garlic paste

4.) Add Mutton, black peppers, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon sticks, cumin seeds, and salt

5.) Add three cups of water and let boil until the meat is cooked or if you are using a pressure cooker, cook for 7-10 minutes

6.) Add soaked rice and cook till the water dries, once water is dried cook on very low heat for 10-15 minutes until the rice have softened

Pulao is a classic Pakistani rice dish.  It can be tricky to cook at times, the process of making sure the rice is soft enough takes specific calculation.  I was taught as a basic rule of thumb by my Gul Khala (Aunt) the quantity of the water is double the amount of rice used; so if you have one cup of rice you would use two cups of water. After the meat softens you can always add more water to the broth if it isn’t equivalent.  Another tip learned from my sister is once the broth is dried from the rice let the rice sit on low heat for a minimum of 10 minutes, the longer they sit the softer they get. Once cooked serve with plain yogurt or mint chutney.  Let me know how the recipe works for you!

Bon Apetit,

Kitty