Assalamu-alaikum (peace be upon you) fellow readers and avid blog-wers (get it blog followers?),

Fall is near (or here perhaps) thus the tree leaves are about to turn golden orange, red, and yellow around these parts of Indiana. The weather is undoubtedly (well there is some doubt considering we live in Indiana and the weather seemingly changes unexpectedly every hour) getting cooler and the crisp, green grass is fading away ever so slightly. Activities will start moving indoors and that is where we found the young men of the ISGL Youth Group on Friday night.

Every semester, as part of our ongoing effort to empower our youth with life skills they can use now and in the future, we take a moment to experience and learn simple dishes which are reflective of different ethnic cuisines around the world. What some of our former youth group members (turned college students) have found out is these cooking skills come in handy when mom and dad are not around to make nice home-cooked meals for you! For those of our young lads who have a few years until the jump to college or work, these skills provide an opportunity to go home and make a nice meal for mom/mama/mommy and dad/baba/daddy so they get a night off from the kitchen.

After going over two tasty tips important to follow for successful teamwork (communication, communication, communicatio – it is a two-way street [speak and learn to listen], and respect team leaders and teammates), our distinguished culinary chef, Br. Ihsan, quickly broke our youth into mini-chef teams and off we went! With a simple recipe, raw materials, cooking pots, and a dose of creativity, our young men were off to experience the wonderful challenge of re-creating simple dishes from Chinese cuisine. What dishes did our young men get to test their fingers and taste buds on? Look below!

Ahhhh the camera got me! Omar falls back in shock. Meanwhile Ahmed lurks in the background ready to toss a soccer ball at the camera…or at Omar?

Mujtaba leads a crew of volunteers to set-up our dinner tables. Cups, napkins, spoon, fork, plates…we’ve got everything alhamdulillah!

Ihsan gives one last word of advice to our young lads – “Remember oil is NOT your friend!”


Whatcha looking at? Raad and Muhammad roll their chicken in corn flour gently coating the meat for Manchurian Chicken! It looks good enough to eat right now, no?

Remember when your mother told you not to play with your food…a few guys missed that memo…


…including Hamza and company who appear to be having too much fun with corn flour (and they were supposed to be making shrimp)!

Mustafa carefully lowers his chicken into the crisper (or frying pot) – KFC is sooooo jealous right about now.

Abdelrahman and Bassim look on as Murtaza and Danyal pour (a bit too much!) chili flakes into the chicken bowl. Spice is relative, right?


Let’s count all of our fingers now_1, 2, 3…okay we’ve got all 10 digits! The rainbow peppers have found their way onto our cutting board.

Maghrib prayer break – the poor kitchen needed a break from all of the noise and bustle of our youth. This would be the most serenity to descend down onto the kitchen in the next two hours.


FOOOOOOD! We loooovvveee FOOODDD!

Ahhhh finally we get to eat! Relax and dig in compadres; y’all did a great job cooking tonight ma shaa Allah!

In shaa Allah recipes from tonight’s cooking fun-fest will be posted up in the coming days so you and your family can try your hand at home making some of these creative, tasty dishes in shaa Allah! Until next time, happy eating!