May 25, 2013

HELLO! Pakistan May 2013: Thai Chicken & Rice Noodle Salad

Hunger & Haw Hai's feature, Salad Days: Thai Chicken & Rice Noodle Saladcommissioned for HELLO! Pakistan's May 2013 issue.
"I refuse to settle for a bowl of bland or boring. I’m looking for a burst of bright, fresh flavors and frankly, this salad is fantastically fool-proof. Nestled in a bed of noodles, the heat of the chili relaxes against the cool freshness of the herbs and the crunch of the peanuts adds some sass to the soy-glazed chicken. Couple these ingredients with the signature savory-sweetness of a traditional Thai dressing and trust me, your taste-buds will be left tingling. All the spice without the sizzle!"

Get Hunger & Haw Haw Hai's recipe for Thai Chicken & Rice Noodle Salad (click on image to enlarge)

May 6, 2013

How To Spot A Social Climber & Chili Con Carne with Honey Cornbread

Belligerent Buddies: Me and B play party posers!

Oh! My! God!  Does it feel good to be back and blabbing! Taping the trap shut has been traumatic, I tell you! Have you noticed the exclamation marks?!? Intended to illustrate how excited I am! May I begin with how much I missed you? I was this close to curling up cocoon-style and crying. Okay, that was a tad OTT, but there was a tinge of truth to that. The grapevine’s been gushing with gossip, guys and gals, and God, have I gathered some juicy, jaw-dropping gems! Now do you get why I was so desperate? I’ve been dying to dish! I’ve also been dying to sleep like it’s going out of style, but that’s a separate story.

On a side-note, I swear I’ll stop adding exclamation marks to everything...soon!

Honestly, this hiatus was like being hit by a hurricane. I’m weak and worn out and want to whine. The upside is I have an amazingly awesome alibi for going AWOL. Come to think of it, there’s a couple. Care to count?  

Let’s begin with my best friends wed a week apart, which obviously entailed attending at least a million events. And what is a shaadi without some shor-sharaaba, right? Cue the music and move over Maroon 5 ‘cause I’ve got the moves like Jagger. Courtesy Kallu the choreographer, I am capable of cutting a rug to over a dozen desi dance numbers. Also, blatantly badgering my brother-in-law to get betrothed finally bore fruit.  He traded his freedom for a fabulous fiancĂ©e! In other news, the husband and I hosted a pre-nuptial party for our pals. And an extremely exciting Elmo-themed event for our baby’s first birthday. Oh, and there was our anniversary. And dare I forget that daunting deadline. The pressure of putting Hunger & Haw Hai’s first published feature was fierce.

UPDATE: Between the time that I began typing this out, till now, I’ve also hosted a laugh-out-loud ladies night. Now, I generally don’t gush about my girls, but I’m going with my gut and saying it anyways; I have a great gang! Hilarious, hot-headed homies! Additionally, I’ve attended another engagement, followed by an afternoon affair to applaud the affianced. Shout out, Juggan Kazim; may you always be blessed and beautiful! For the record, I’ve resolved to remain under the radar for the rest of the year. 

You know, the husband asks me the same question every weekend. Stay in or step out? Pardon me, my prince, but you're well aware that that's like asking me to pick between poison and Parisian pastries. A no-brainer. Slacking off is higher on my to-do list than socializing. Seriously, I’d sooner have my throat slit than spend Saturday night at some snotty soiree.

Here's why; I am in utter violation of several sacred social standards. For starters, I'm probably doomed beyond redemption for recycling clothes. Also, I'd rather have a hernia than go through the horror of having my hair done. And blah-blah banter makes me want to say bye-bye before I can blink.

But back in the day, I was the master of March madness and so I made a highly unprecedented move. I committed my calendar to being social and on the scene.  

By the way, this time was a brand new ballgame. The thing is, at my best, I’m elusive; at all other times I’m almost impossible to track down, but Section 1.1 of my crew’s Code of Conduct frowns furiously upon flakiness. And if my calculations are correct, I have a grand total of five friends and, frankly, I’d like to keep them close thus, blowing off besties was not an option. And so I sucked it up, spazzing at the sudden switch from wet-blanket to wild-thang.

I felt like I was perpetually primping for a party.

On the other hand, and I honestly don’t know how he does it, but the husband has this enviable ability to transform into a teenager at will. And nothing ups the ante like being aided and abetted by an entire entourage of Aitchisonians. Even I’ll admit their energy can be quite infectious.

I must also mention that my man was so moved by the moment, he managed to get his hands on a mic, making himself the MC at multiple mehendis.  Hype, humor, hullabaloo; he hit it out of the park. In fact, he did such a raging job that one reviewer raved he could give Ryan Seacrest a run for his money.  Of course, my counterpart is clueless about who Ryan Seacrest is, but somehow that’s not a shocker. Bless your innocence and enthusiasm, baby. Boo-Yah!

Anyways, at long last it’s over. I shall now head back to hibernating and being a hermit.

Oh wait, something slipped. Something saucy, something scandalous! I spy, with my little eye, something that starts with an S.