Food Friday and Iron Work

Tonight a dear friend is coming for dinner, my older son’s third grade teacher. My son had a big part in the planning of the meal. He suggested chicken with amba.

Amba comes from Iraq and in many ways is a keystone between Indian and Middle eastern cooking. It is made with pickled lemons and mango. For both me and my son the smell, and the taste of amba pushes a crazy button in my head. I smell it.. I MUST have some. I guess other people get excited about chocolate, but that complicated pungent smell gets my juices going.



Cooking this chicken was easy. I put some amba inside the chickens and coated the outside  with lots more amba.  Then I cooked until done. That’s the recipe.

Once the chicken was cool I cut it up into serving pieces. The amba has a strong  and complicated flavor. I think the rest of the meal  needs to provide a gentle balance.The jasmine rice with cardamom is cooking right now and I still have to make the green salad. 


My son made the challah and I made an apricot non –dairy ice cream. It’s dried apricots and a couple of peaches simmered in coconut milk with some sugar and then pureed.


It is now getting turned into ice cream by our trusty ice cream maker.SAM_2709

We are so excited that my son’s teacher is coming for dinner. We have been full of memories of my son’s time in her class as we have been anticipating tonight.

Ironically I have re-connected with one of kids who was in the afterschool class that I ran in 1982 and three. I have been trading delightful, funny messages back and forth my with student  who is as funny as he was when he was four…but he does write a whole lot better.


As a bonus, Friday treat, some lovely old iron work all within walking distance of my apartment.


Some of the iron work may have been custom made. It is more likely that it was ordered from a a catalog. I love how the choices both create a sense of individuality to each building. I also love how the decorative work makes the utilitarian lovely.SAM_2663



  1. Sarah - we were in Russia a couple years ago - Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as several villages - I was amazed at the iron work there! Old? New? no way to tell but I took photo after photo of fences and gates - all beautiful! Martha Ann


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