Plantbased Hummus Sandwich Bowl

Hummus Couscous Bowl.jpeg

So I’ve been dabbling with the idea of trying to make my own healthier version of falafels for a while. I’ve been craving a legit falafel sandwich (like they make back home) and I low-key perpetually crave hot crunchy falafels. But what’s a girl to do when your nearest hummus and falafel fix is a good 15-minute drive away? Although I initially started making this dish with the intention of making it sort of a falafel sandwich in a bowl kind of dish, I quickly realized, falafel needed more time to make than I was willing to invest yesterday evening.

And so the hummus sandwich bowl was born. Spiced couscous, pickled onions and red cabbage, crunchy spicy chickpeas with a tahini and parsley dressing — I mean….commmmeeee onnnnn.

This dish is completely plant-based, needs no more than 20 minutes to put together, tastes amazeballs the next day for lunch and tastes really really good…like really good.

I’m going to divide all the different ingredients needed for each part of this dish so that you can add on, or remove whatever you’re not necessarily fond of. Once you learn how to make the dressing, couscous and chickpea parts you can add them to any dish that you like. I make one of them at least once every few days. The dressing is good on any salad, the chickpeas are a perfect plant protein addition to any dish and the couscous is the perfect base for anything.


For Dressing:

  • 3 tablespoons of tahini
  • The juice of half a lemon
  • A splash of water
  • Parsley
  • Sea salt to taste


For Crispy Chickpeas:

  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained well
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 chili
  • Coriander
  • Olive oil
  • Any Middle-eastern spices you like (I like to use: cumin, cinnamon, paprika, zaatar, dukkah)
  • The juice of half a lemon


For Couscous:

  • 1 cup of wholewheat couscous
  • Any Middle-eastern spices you like (I like to use: cumin, cinnamon, paprika, zaatar, dukkah)
  • 1 teaspoon of pomegranate molasses
  • Olive oil


For Toppings:

  • Finely sliced red onion (1 small one, or half a medium-sized one)
  • Organic apple cider vinegar
  • Finely sliced red cabbage
  • Sliced tomatoes


How to make it happen:

  • First things first. Let’s start by pickling the red cabbage and red onion. The reason I liked to pickle raw onions when adding them to salads and sandwiches, is that I feel like the vinegar kind of kills the potent oniony smell. It’s totally your call though.
  • In a bowl, add the onion and add about 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar and a pinch of sea salt. Toss the onion around to make sure it’s coated and let it sit for about 10 minutes (or as long as it takes you to put together everything else)
  • In another bowl, do the same thing to the sliced red cabbage. *
  • Then, on to the couscous. In a container with a lid, add the couscous, olive oil, spices and pomegranate molasses and mix well. Then, add just enough boiling water to cover the surface of the couscous, mix again and close the container with a lid. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, then fluff with a fork and close again till ready to serve.
  • And now for the chickpeas. In a nonstick skillet (I love my cast iron), heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil (or enough to coat your pan) and add the drained (and dried) chickpeas. Be careful because they will pop around like popcorn while you’re waiting for them to get nice and crispy. In a pestle and mortar, crush the garlic cloves and chili until it forms a paste. Once the chickpeas have started to get some color on them, lower the heat and squeeze some lemon on them, add some sea salt, and whatever spices you like. Then add the garlic/chili mash and cook for about 2 minutes till the garlic gets nice and golden. (I am salivating just typing this)
  • For the dressing, in your pestle and mortar, bash some parsley until it turns sort of like a paste, add about 3 tablespoons of tahini sauce, add some water to dilute it a bit, some lemon juice and some sea salt. Keep mixing till the dressing gets nice and creamy.
  • Now it’s time to assemble. You can either mix everything all together, or place the couscous in a bowl, and the rest of the ingredients around it — your call.

*The pickled red cabbage and onions could last in the fridge in an airtight container for a good 3-4 days. They’re delicious in salads and sandwiches and really good for your gut.


It may seem like quite a few steps, but I promise it’s a lot easier than it sounds. It’s tangy, creamy, crunchy, spicy and absolutely friggin delicious. Completely plant based, and takes less than 20 minutes to put all together. You neeeeed to try this recipe (paleez?)

While you’re here, have you followed @StraightupBananas on Instagram yet?

There’s nothing like a good breakfast to get you out of bed.

Today’s breakfast in bed is a peanut butter oats and Chia seed pudding topped with walnut, bananas, and a sprinkle of more Chia seeds.

If you’re a peanut butter or bonoffee pie fan–this healthy pudding is for you!

What makes you want to get out of bed?

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What’s better than a healthy breakfast taco? 4 healthy breakfast tacos in bed, of course. 🍴🌞

These corn tortillas are loaded with scrambled eggs seasoned with paprika, oregano and cumin. Added some avocado, crumbled feta loads of jalepeños 🌋🌋 yumm!

What are you having for breakfast?

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Healthy Watermelon Pizza

I know…I know…before you think I’m crazy for making a watermelon pizza, bear with me, please.

I found myself unexpectedly home for the week and decided to seize the opportunity and teach my younger siblings all about healthy eating.

This recipe was the perfect way to introduce healthy eating to them. I feel like Ramadan is the perfect time to teach them about clean eating–all the fruits were a wonderful way to keep them hydrated while getting some extra fiber in their little bodies. It was so much fun to make and it looked and tasted absolutely gorgeous.


So, here’s how you get it done:

1- Go to your local grocer and buy yourself a nice and plump watermelon.

2- Cut the watermelon in half.

3- Cut one slice off the top of one of the watermelon halves.

4- Cut the slice of watermelon into 8 slices (pie style).

5- Layer the “pizza slices” with sliced bananas, kiwi, strawberries, goji berries, blackberries and sprinkle with mint leaves and shredded coconut.

6- Easy, peasy!

The good thing about this recipe is that you can pimp it up or down depending on what ingredients you’ve got lying around. You can drizzle on some rose water, honey, or balsamic vinegar. You can even sprinkle on some nuts! You could literally put whatever you feel like putting on it! My parents had some berries in the backyard and that’s why I put some on. It’s totally up to you!

Who says healthy eating has to be boring and can’t involve your kids, right?

Go straight-up bananas with me and give this recipe a go and tell me what you think!

Quick and easy roasted coconut and kale salad

I’m still in denial that the long-awaited long Easter weekend is over. In fact, I’m in denial that I’m at work typing away on my laptop. This is all a figment of your imagination, banana head. 

Over the weekend I did some serious cooking (and eating) catching up. A crazy week at work called for the ultimate chillaxing weekend with maximum food action. And boy, was that chillaxing weekend with maximum food action achieved! 

Last Friday was what I like to call: Thai Feast Day. I rolled up my sleeves, bashed me some lemongrass and tried desperately to mimic all the seductive flavors I had in my mouth while at my favorite Thai restaurant, Little Bangkok (Nope. Not endorsed in any way or form. It’s amazing if you haven’t tried it.)

This is the part where the fridge-rummage dance ensues. After a long and romantic walk to the fridge, I found a few gems: kale, shredded coconut, eggs…now what to make of them…


KA-BAM! I give you the roasted coconut and kale salad, ladies and gentlemen. Delicious, quick, and oh so healthy! 

Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. 1 tomato
  2. 1 cup of shredded coconut
  3. 1 hard-boiled egg
  4. coriander
  5. a bunch of kale
  6. three pieces of dried mango
  7. soy sauce
  8. coconut oil
  9. grated or powdered ginger
  10. lemon juice

The method behind my madness:

  1. First, preheat your oven to about 150 C.
  2. Then, rip up the kale and place in a bowl with coconut oil, soy sauce, and shredded coconut. Mix well. Massage the oil into the kale leaves.
  3. Place kale and coconut mixture on a tray and put in oven.  Let those chill there for about 12 minutes, making sure you toss twice.
  4. In the meantime, toss the egg, tomato, mango, and coriander in a bowl.
  5. Once the kale leaves are all dried up and the coconut has gone a dark golden brown add the mixture to the egg, tomato, mango, and coriander.
  6. For the dressing, grate a tiny bit of ginger and a splash of lemon juice and dress the salad.

Voila! You’ve got a delicious, healthy, and easy Thai salad on the table! I served this salad with a coconut milk curried chicken breast and Thai coconut milk soup. I’ll  post the recipes soon!

Go straight-up bananas with me and give this recipe a shot! I’d love to hear from you! Oh..and add me on Instagram too!

Can’t think of a quick, easy, and healthy recipe for lunch time?  I’m having a spinach, water cress, beetroot, carrot, and tuna salad for lunch! What about you?

Hey! Check out my blog

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This is what a typical lazy Saturday afternoon looks like in the Abul Hasan’s household! On the right you’ve got smoked eggplant, blue cheese, caramelized onions and parmesan cheese pizza and the left figs, gorgonzola, and a balsamic reduction. Absolutely friggin delicious!

For more recipes check out my blog

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