الأربعاء، يوليو 21، 2010

P.S. Tastes better when shared with a friend

My mother laughingly describes her cooking with "cuisine of a working woman" which is quick, good, and easy to make food. Nothing too exotic, nothing that requires too much preparations and effort like Mahshi. Quick and edible sums it up :)

A long time ago, when life was less hectic and harsh, I used to spend the wintery nights with my family, gathered in the living room. We'd be talking, reading, or even studying while enjoying each others' company , then you'd find mama asking "Who wants Saratan?" Which will be typically followed by my excited "Meeeeee" , my brother's disgusted " No" , and a defeated "whatever" from my father.

"Saratan" is the Arabic word for "cancer" and what it entails in my family is a bland soup made of chicken stock, boiled water, and fried noodles. The only reason it is called Saratan is because my family is blessed with a twisted sense of humor.
We used to make that soup alot and I can't even remember what we called back in those days. Then there was an article about how "Maggi chicken stock" causes cancer. For some odd reason this was a very popular topic back then, and many families stopped using it -or atleast considered doing so - for the first panicky months that immediately followed the article. My wonderful family however chose to laughingly nickname the chicken stock soup "Saratan" and go on eating it every couple of nights :)

Saratan brings me great childhood memories.
Me, Salma and Hend - my chosen cousins- shared special Saratan rituals when they visited me. We'd gather in my room , turn off the lights, light some candles, and on my small blue shaky table share an enormous feast of Saratan and crunchy bread. We used to share alot of stories by candle light. I'd tell the about my latest stories about Ali, and they in turn would tell me about the "Ali"s of their lives.
This dinner was usually followed by a special cake that we bake our selves. The cake is made of 3 layers of carefully arranged biscuits, finally coated with lots of Jelly Cola and fruity candies.

As you can see, even though I know far more tasty recipes, none of them awakes such wonderful memories in me.
So my recipe for this month's theme has to be "Saratan".

Here is the recipe,
a slightly modified one that renders it less plain in taste :)
  • Melt a small spoon of butter in a medium sized pot
  • Add noodles, chopped green onions, and small pieces of chicken.
  • Stir till they all acquire a golden glow.
  • Add salt, pepper and ginger.
  • Add pre boiled water and 2 cubes of chicken stock.
  • Reduce the heat and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
Pour some in a colorful bowl,add crunchy bread on the side, light some candles and turn off the lights.

Now the most important ingredient or else the whole recipe fails: Close your eyes for a second, throw in a spoon full of happy childhood memories, and slowly sprinkle lots of giggles.
Now open your eyes and ... Enjoy your meal!

Note: This post is my contribution for July's theme "Recipe" along with my fellow female bloggers/friends. You can find the 1st one here

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Karim يقول...

hi Ma3t, Its been very long since i visited ur blog, every time I remember to check it out I find great joy in reading ur notes,it all started when I read one of ur notes called (el 7ayah) more than 3 years ago, ever since then your blog has been a beautiful escape to your world of nostalgia, humor...and now its ur recipes...greetings Ma3t