Food Philosophy: COLOURS EVERYWHERE!!!
Top culinary influences: My Egyptian grandmother. My Egyptian Father. Anything South Asian. And ohhh…Asian soups with those wonderfully colourful veggies. And, of course, Coptic seyami (vegan) food. Healthy food.
Favourite cook books: Any cheap cookbook you get from Winners with lots of pictures.
Favourite 5 ingredients:
1) Fresh thyme.
2) Fresh leek.
3) Fresh cilantro.
4) Fresh mint.
5) Freshly ground pepper.
The trend here, if you can tell, is anything fragrant.
Favourite 5 dishes—in no particular order:
1) My grandmother’s pickled eggplant.
2) Tagliatelle rose from Tre Marie, an Italian restaurant in Montreal that I’ve been going to since the womb.
3) Fried liver with caramelized onions (also from Tre Marie)
4) Koshary with crispy onions and tomato sauce (basically, an Egyptian party of carbs.)
5) My grandmother’s whole grilled sea bass with tahini. Om.
My father's creativity: my 25th birthday breakfast!
How did you learn to cook?: My mother hated cooking by herself, (and dislikes cooking in general) and would always have me as her sous-chef, and have me chop onions and several cloves of garlic for her. When I got older, she kind of left the “preparing” part of the meal to me, as she preferred the “eating” part of the meal.
Your week in cooking:
…Working on making the perfect over easy eggs…I will prevail.
…Burning half a batch of almonds (but in all fairness, I really do have an oven from hell)
…Lots of quinoa
Culinary fascination of the moment: Working butter into flour (thank you Amy!)
Culinary ambitions: Achieving culinary time management. Ie, the ability to not burn anything.
Top Serving Tips: Serving food HOT. And of course, as many colours as possible on the plate.
Your dream kitchen: Bright and cozy, with lots of beautiful leafy plants hanging from the ceiling and herbs on windowsills, overlooking a meadow (or just my backyard. not picky.). Lots of room for guests. Maybe one of those gigantic patio swing contraptions that you see in retirement homes. Fully equipped with a wall-unit oven, an indoor stovetop grill, surround-sound speaker system, and, of course, a triple sink (2 for dishes and one for washing/thawing fish or meat) preferably custom-built by an ebeniste whose pastimes include reading Anne of Green Gables and watching Titanic.
AND CERTAINLY….NOT this.