• Oct
  • 24
  • 2011

rmit | rmitis

RMIT or Monash?

RMIT or Monash?

That was me [thinking] back in 2003 after graduating from High school.

pamphlet islamic design

Interior Design. I knew exactly what I wanted to do. It has always been a passion of mine since I was 12. I just needed to choose somewhere that would fulfil my childhood dreams. I crossed out Swinburne Uni. So it left me with either RMIT or Monash.  At Monash, they call it Bachelor of Interior Architecture. Sounds posh. And smart. But its just a name and the structure of the course is very similar to the one offered at RMIT, except they call theirs Bachelor of Interior Design. Monash’s IA has only been around recently whereas the course at RMIT has been around since way before the 80’s. In fact, one of my dad’s friend graduated from ID there and is now a very successful interior designer, and no he is not gay!

pamphlet islamic design

So I chose RMIT for many reasons. 1.-Established for a lot longer. 2- Recognised nationally and internationally. 3- A lot of successful designers graduated from that course. 4- Easy to get to from where we used to live (direct train line) 5-Loved the fact it was right in the heart of Melbourne CBD, so that means a lot of shopping and eating in betweeen classes! Now, when I look back, I loved every single moment even during the bad and ugly. Yes. There were times when I felt like my brains were ripped apart, my eyes became water bags and my body turned into a dead vegetable. That was how the course drained the energy out of me. But I still thoroughly enjoyed it. For those who aren’t familiar with ID, its not what you think it is. Its not about cushions or curtains. Its quite the opposite. Its about spatial architecture and design. Exploring the relationship with its environment/society and how it affects our sensory. They really do squeeze your brain to think outside the context of interior design. The course is heavily theoretical based than a practical one. But urm, if you’re into hands on stuff like colours, furnishings etc…RMIT Tafe offers a Diploma in Interior Decoration. Check ’em out!

Besides studying, studying and more studying, I had a social life too. It was the beautiful sisters (friends) I had met at RMITIS (RMIT Islamic Society) that changed me into who I am today. I started practising Islam. Not that I wasn’t practising prior to this, but it made me truly understand the beauty of this religion. I even met my husband through the society. So can you see how it has changed my life? Alhamdulillah, to a better one. I am forever grateful to Him.

The prayer room at RMIT became my second home. A place to hang out and to catch up on sleep (from those sleepless nights spent at the lab)! So if you’re at RMIT, join the society! Contribute a little for dawah purposes. Run some activities. We had the best of times during our years spent there. We organised paint ball trips, horse riding, sisters social nights, sisters lectures, games, bbq’s…oh and so many more! One of my small contribution to RMITIS are these pamphlet covers. Now these were from 5 years ago. If you’d like a copy of a current one with colour, IISNA’s pamphlet team (may Allah reward them) have developed their own set of pamphlets, printed and distributed hundreds and thousands world wide. You can check them out here. They have 15 titles so far and counting…

 


  • Oct
  • 22
  • 2011

30 minute chicken curry

chicken curry rendang with roti canai

Making a traditional and authentic chicken curry would simply mean staying in the kitchen for hours, pounding fresh ingredients and so forth. These days, you’ll easily find a lot of the supermarkets selling curry powder and curry paste. But I wouldn’t recommend buying curry powder from your local western supermarket though. Try to get them from any Asian grocery or even at your Indian grocer. There are many types but I only prefer one. Baba’s Meat Curry Powder, made in Malaysia.

When I first got married to my Lebanese husband, my mother in law made a pot of chicken curry (bought locally). The taste? Well, it didn’t come close to a curry. But then again, I can’t blame her. She’s not familiar with Asian cuisine so she and the rest of the family enjoyed it thoroughly. I just ate in silence. One day, I introduced my version of chicken curry using Baba’s and she fell in love. The look on her face was priceless, it was as though she had not tasted good chicken curry in her life.

baba's

There are many types of chicken curry; dry, wet, yellow, red, brown etc. The different variety of curries made by Malay, Indian, Chinese, Indo also slightly differ from one another. This curry here, I would say its a mix between Malay and Indian. Its so yummy and literally done in 30 minutes (if you use small cuts of chicken). I usually make a big pot so I have leftovers. Serve it with some rice, prata (roti) or yellow glutinous rice and there you go,  a meal for the next 3 nights.

 

RECIPE FOR EASY MALAYSIAN CHICKEN CURRY

Serves: 3
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 30 mins

Ingredients

1/2 kilo chicken, cut into small pieces (with bones)
1 medium onion, finely sliced
1 cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods
2 cloves
1 medium tomato, quartered (optional)
1/3 cup coconut milk
2-3 tbsp Baba’s curry powder (I like mine really hot so I use 5 tbsp)
2 cups water
1 tsp sugar
salt to taste
4 tbsp oil

Method

1. Heat oil and sautee onions in a medium size pot. Add all the spices and tomato and fry until fragrant for about 5 mins.

2. Add the curry powder, chicken and water and cook on a medium heat for 15 mins.

3. Pour in the coconut milk and stir until well combined.

4. Season well with sugar and salt then simmer for another 10 minutes or so.

5. Serve with rice or pratha(roti/bread).

Click ‘Read More’ below to print the recipe and leave a comment.


  • Oct
  • 21
  • 2011

in my deen | virtues of friday

“Whoever reads Surah al-Kahf on the day of Jumu’ah (Friday), will have a light that will shine from him from one Friday to the next.”

(narrated by al-Bayhaqi & al-Hakim classified as status of Hasan by Ibn Hajar)


  • Oct
  • 19
  • 2011

taking the joy

frame-joy

into a frame!

Chalk is so versatile that you could be so creative with it. Not to mention how cheap they are too. Kids, teachers, artists even the homeless uses chalk! I like it because it gives me the freedom to re-create as many times as I want. Rub, delete, draw.

frame

Chalk and blackboard go hand in hand. But I didn’t want to use any ordinary blackboard, that would be boring. So I paid a visit to the junk yard and got myself this frame. Still wrapped in its own packaging, there was no sign of age or damage. In fact it was brand new but I only paid a few dollars for it, so I couldn’t be any happier. Now I don’t need anymore dark colours in my house, so I hesitated whether I should really paint it or not. And so I did. It turned out fantastic and exactly as what I had in mind. Its now found its place on our mantel piece.

Note: To paint the frame I first had to seal it with a white primer and then my chosen colour. I used Dulux Acrylic ‘Taupe Stone’ as we’ve painted some walls in the house with this colour.


  • Oct
  • 18
  • 2011

spring spaghetti with basil, chilli & garlic

I love this weather. Currently sitting at 24.3 degrees, I couldn’t ask for a better start to a perfect week ahead, inshallah. Inspired by my fresh garden (thanks to hubby!) and the wonderful sunshine we’ve been getting lately, I whipped up this quick meal in no more than 15 minutes. Can I tell you about the flavours? Well they just bursts in your mouth: left, right and centre! Thanks to a few powerful ingredients; garlic, chilli and basil…with a dash of extra virgin olive oil is all you need to turn it into an absolute flavoursome meal. Trust me, its really that good.

organic cooking oil

Ok, lets be honest. I need to give credit to where it all originated from. Secret Recipe. That’s where I first had it (i’ll post a review of this place soon). But for $16.90 a plate, ouch! I seriously felt guilty. Not to my palate but to my husbands pocket. So I decided to try and replicate this and oh la la, what a dish we have here for just under $5 per person. You can substitute prawns with chicken for an even cheaper meal. Hmm, now I really do sound cheap don’t I? yikes!

Slice the vegetables. Slice the garlic. Don’t chop them finely. You want to be able to taste the garlicky flavour.

Sautee the marinated prawns in olive oil. Add a bit of salt and pepper and chilli flakes.

And you have yourself a winning dish. Say hello to Spring!


RECIPE FOR SPRING SPAGHETTI
Inspired by Secret Recipe’s Thai spaghetti

Serves: 2
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 10 mins

Ingredients

2 cups cooked spaghetti
10 prawns (marinate with salt & pepper for an hour)
1 bulb garlic, sliced
1 green capsicum, sliced
1 red capsicum, sliced
4 cherry tomatoes, halved
10 mushrooms, sliced (I didnt have any but if you do,add them)
1 red chilli, cut
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
Handful of basil leaves
2 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp basil infused olive oil
1 tsp chilli oil, for dressing (optional)
100g feta cheese, for dressing (optional)
Salt and pepper, to taste

Method

1. In a saucepan, sautee the marinated prawns in olive oil for 2 minutes.

2. Add garlic and stir until prawns are evenly cooked. This should take another 2 minutes.

3. Add all the vegetables and chilli flakes. Season well with salt and pepper.

4. Add pasta to the sauce mixture and pour over with basil infused olive oil. Toss to combine.

5. Finally, topped with some feta cheese and drizzle with some chilli oil.

Click ‘read more’ below to print out the recipe and leave a comment.


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