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We’ve got your ride.

652 Wharncliffe Road S. London ON N6J 2N4

658 Wharncliffe Road S. London ON N6J 2N4

675 Wharncliffe Road S. London ON N6J 2N7


editorial board


LUFA: Rooftop Gardens


Sehar Shahzad


Sadia Saifuddin


Nazem Kadri’s Charity Golf Classic


Food Basket Program


Love Your Sister Campaign // Book Review


Blissful Amsterdam


Interfaith Camp


Blue Owl: Creative Retreats


Jaan J. Ties





founder / editor-in-chief: Naeema Farooqi ; business development/advertising manager: Ahmed Javed ; the design team: Naira Ahmed & Lina El-Shamy ( ; copy editor: Amal A. Albaz ; contributors: Leila Almawy, Anam Islam, Saud Inam, Hala Ghonaim, Alexis York Lumbard, Sara Naqwi, Sarah Darsha, Hamza Samin, Thasneen Ansi, Marilyn Potter, Aksa Mahmood ; event photographers: Kamran Hameed, Fahim Khan, Saleme Fayad

As salaam u alaikum! It’s good to pause. It’s necessary to do so before we pick up speed to give life our best shot again. Summer was all about that—pausing. And now it is time to go back to work in full force again. In this issue we celebrate pausing and being closer to nature’s wholesome goodness that we often take for granted. We are proud to carry the LUFA story, a rooftop farming initiative by Mohamed Hage in Quebec; vegan and halal neckties from California; a creative retreat in Goderich, and wholesome nutritious treats by Thasneen. Enjoy this issue and don’t forget to pause as you go about your work! Naeema Farooqi founder / editor-in-chief

Cover and contents photography: N. Farooqi, Location: The Port of Goderich on the shore of Lake Huron. Visit:

editor’s note

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LUFA: Rooftop Farming

Have you ever wondered where your fruit and vegetables come from or who actually harvests them? Have you ever had doubts about the wholesomeness and healthiness of the produce that you are consuming? Part of this questioning and probing comes with the clear fact that we don’t exactly know where and how the food we are consuming comes from. Nowadays, quantity serves over quality because the quicker the production, the more profitable the sales. However, Mohamed Hage, an ambitious 32-year old from Montreal decided to take matters into his own hands a few years ago by creating Lufa Farms, a Greenhouse initiative based atop an industrial building’s rooftop. Mohamed Hage is a LebaneseCanadian who moved to Quebec when he was 12. He studied Computer Science and E-Marketing in university and

Mohamed Hage, Founder & CEO of Lufa Farms

eventually became the co-founder and president of Lufa Farms, a fast-growing local greenhouse farm initiative based in Montreal, Canada. Lufa Farms is the world’s first commercial rooftop farm, which launched in 2011. Hage came up with the idea to create a rooftop farming initiative because of his experience growing up in a village in Lebanon where everybody farmed and planted their own fruit and vegetables. Everything was fresh and ready-to-eat daily, and that is one of the primary aims of Lufa Farms – to provide customers with freshly and daily picked produce. Hage and his team are currently in the process of launching their second rooftop farm this week, which will be located in Laval, Canada, just North of Montreal. This particular greenhouse’s aim is to focus more on growing tomatoes and eggplants since they are the vegetables that are most in demand. Hage

explains how the second greenhouse is an improvement from the first one since they all learned from the areas that needed adjustments in the first greenhouse. Hage describes the concept of Lufa Farms by stating, “[We] grow food where people live and grow it more sustainably. Sustainably means using no new land, capturing rain water, and recirculating irrigation water using no pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, and finally bringing our food – freshly picked food – straight to our consumer the same day that it’s harvested.” (The Globe and Mail, 2013) Lufa Farms uses a hydroponic system to produce vegetables. Hydroponic (also known as Aquiculture) is “the cultivation of plants by placing the roots in liquid nutrient solutions rather than in soil – the soilless growth of plants.” (The Free Dictionary, 2013) Hence, they are grown in

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“You’re taking ignored spaces, you’re improving the building’s efficiency, you’re growing with less land, less energy, and you have practically no transportation, no packaging, and no loss” —Mohamed Hage

coconut fiber bags, which are lightweight and nutrient-rich. The greenhouse is heated with a natural gas system at night, along with shade curtains which provide heat retention, but the best part about a greenhouse lying atop a building is the fact that it receives heat from the floors below. This means that the greenhouse only needs half of the energy per square foot to grow its produce, as opposed to the traditional farms on land. Hage explains, “You’re taking ignored spaces, you’re improving the building’s efficiency, you’re growing with less land, less energy, you have practically no transportation and no packaging, and no loss because you’re only harvesting what you need for the day, so it’s a very minimalist way of growing food.” (Tree Hugger, 2013) This greenhouse initiative is so advanced that it even uses custom-developed iPad applications to maintain its agricultural

technologies, technical operations, and climate control. Lufa Farms grows more than 40 varieties of fruit and vegetables and harvests— about 1,000 – 1,500 pounds of produce daily. In addition, they have teamed up with 50 other local food growers to provide over 100 artisanal and organic products such as breads, cheeses, flours, and jams. They deliver more than 2,500 baskets per week to the allocated drop-off points which are within an appropriate vicinity of the greenhouse. The basic baskets start at $30 a week and go up according to quantity and customer preference. Hage explains Lufa Farms’ future goals and mentions how one of them is to supply local restaurants with their food and produce. He also adds, “Our vision for growing Lufa is to be able to run all

of our farms from our offices here in Montreal. So, even if you had a farm in China, it would be run and managed by the team here. So, our vision for farming is that it can be reproducible and it can be systematized.” (The Globe and Mail) For a while, it seemed as though the further we progress with technology, the more we leave behind the values and qualities of healthy and sensible living. However, all is not lost due to initiatives such as Lufa Farms that are rising above the occasion of bettering our world with great, intelligent and creative initiatives that save money and energy, and promote the well-being of the customer instead of the company. // Leila Almawy Photo credit: LUFA (

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Sehar Shahzad

Meet Sehar Shahzad, a 21-year-old Psychology student at the University of Toronto, who has found success in bridging her artistic passions with her Islamic faith. Shahzad is an Islamic and Arabic Calligraphy artist whose work has been showcased at the Royal Ontario Museum, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and is now running a business creating custom pieces for her clients across Canada.

Have you always had an interest in Islamic art? I’ve always loved art, especially painting and drawing. In high school, our assignments required us to really think critically about the meanings we put into our artwork, and this was also a time in my life where religion became a lot more significant and personal to me. I started to incorporate Islamic themes and ideas into my assignments, and once I started doing this, I felt like I couldn’t turn back. The amount of personal reflection and deep meanings I found in my work was something that strengthened not only my love for art, but more importantly my love for my faith. What drew you to calligraphy? I have always believed that Islamic art,

especially calligraphy, contains a certain spiritual beauty that always transcends the physical beauty of the art. It is not just the nature of the script that makes the calligraphy look beautiful; rather it is the inherent beauty of the word of God that truly illuminates the text. Have you studied or received any special training in calligraphy? In 2013, I started learning with Master Calligrapher Haji Noor Deen. A student learns with his or her master for several years before earning their ijaza or license, which is a certification that qualifies them as having mastered the script and ready to teach students of their own. How did you get your business started? I set up my Facebook page in 2010 in order to share my artwork, but as my interest and skills grew, so did my opportunities.

I started getting a few requests for custom artwork, and from there it slowly developed into a business. Do you have a goal you wish to achieve through your artwork? “The devotional artist’s testification of faith: ‘There’s no audience except God. This art is a manifestation of God.’” – Nader Khan The words I quoted above are by someone whose passion for his devotional art form (singing and song-writing) have always been inspirational to me, and it sums up the aspired intentions perfectly. // Anam Islam Photo courtesy:

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Sadia Saifuddin Californian Courage Abû Hurayrah relates that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Islam began strange, and it will become strange again just like it was at the beginning, so blessed are the strangers.” [Sahîh Muslim (1/130)] The story of Sadia Saifuddin emerging as the first Muslim Student Regent to serve on the University of California Board is a story that has many lessons we can learn as a Muslim community. Sadia, a Social Welfare major (BA ’14) not only made history by her appointment to the University of California Board, but made a strong statement for Muslim Americans in the way she conducted herself in a room full of individuals who criticized her for her ideas, thoughts and political stances. Her appointment was not only a victory for the Muslim community, but America as a nation. It was the triumph of justice, freedom, wisdom and tolerance over the forces of intolerance, bigotry, ignorance, and hatred. There are several lessons especially for Muslim students and for the Muslim community from Sadia’s story. The way Sadia conducted herself in a room full of individuals who spoke negatively about her was commendable and an example for all Muslim students who face Islamophobia in their schools and classrooms. For many Muslim American youth growing up in America, especially those growing up in a post-9/11 world, are faced with the daily challenge of defending their Islamic beliefs and practices. As a community we need to instill confidence in our youth to face the challenges that do occur at middle schools, high schools and college campuses. We must as parents teach our kids about what Islam is, what it is not, and to be proud of their Muslim identity. We must also provide them resources to counter Islamophobia in their classrooms and schools. We also must not be afraid to speak openly about domestic or foreign policies of our country that affect the lives of millions of innocent Muslims. We are a nation that prides itself on its freedoms, of which the most core one is freedom of speech.

“If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter” – George Washington Many parents in fear of backlash or fear for their children deemphasize the role of Islam in the lives of their children and discourage them from practicing Islam or even “looking Muslim.” Natural parental instinct to protect children is ok, but to compromise one’s beliefs and identity is nothing to be proud of. We have nothing to apologetic about in our faith or our identity. As Muslims, we must not be ashamed of who we are, what we believe or what we stand for. We must not waterdown or be apologetic about our faith. We are representatives and heirs of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)’s message. The sacrifice, countless nights of prayer, dua, and suffering he endured to ensure the purity of the message of Islam was sustained cannot just be merely overlooked or tucked away. It’s essentially hypocrisy if we claim to be Muslim, but don’t practice. It’s as if we are the hypocrites during the time of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who abandoned him and disobeyed him blatantly and openly. We must remember our identity because if we don’t define who we are, then others will. We must honor our covenant with the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to represent Islam. Islamophobia is very much so a problem in America and the world, but the solution is not to shy away from Islam, its teaching or its practices. In these difficult times for Muslims, we must increase our level of confidence through educating ourselves, our children and our communities about

the beauty of Islam. We must make Islam relatable to the problems and challenges our communities face. Islam is not a message solely for Muslims, it’s a message for mankind. Islam offer solutions to many of the world’s problems, but if we as Muslims shy away from conveying the message to ourselves, our families, our friends and our communities, then the world will not change. Change begins from within. It was the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)’s character that won over the hearts of those he sought to give guidance to. We must ask ourselves: are we doing the same? Are our characters in the line of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)? Are our characters bringing people closer to Islam or repelling them away from Islam? I strongly believe that if Muslims were to simply align their values to Islamic values and implement Prophetic manners into their daily lives they would see a significant improvement in the image of Islam and Muslims. Stories, like the story of Sadia Saifuddin remind us that we must, as Muslims, stand strong in the face of hatred, ignorance, and bigotry. We must respond with wisdom, knowledge, and mercy and not with emotion and remember to be courageous in the face of hatred and bigotry and we must remember the words of Allah: If Allah should aid you, no one can overcome you; but if He should forsake you, who is there that can aid you after Him? And upon Allah let the believers rely (Quran 3:160) // Saud Inam Photo credit: Sana Saifuddin

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Nazem Kadri Charity Golf Classic Raises $110,000

What do hockey, golf and fundraising for charities have in common? Nazem Kadri! Nazem is a hockey player extraordinaire that the Muslim community is proud of who is currently playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs and is a former London Knights player. Nazem Kadri and his family, with their care and commitment to the community brought these three elements together with resounding success! The Nazem Kadri Charity Golf Classic was held on August 11, 2013 at the FireRock Golf Club in Komoka, Ontario. On August 22, 2013 a press conference was held at the London Muslim Mosque. A momentous amount of $110,000 was raised for The Muslim Resource Centre, St. Joseph’s Health Care Breast Care Centre, and The Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada. The Charity Golf Classic was organized in association with the Islamic Centre of Southwest Ontario and the London Muslim Mosque. Sponsors and organizing committee members helped organize the event.

Nazem Kadri, born and raised in London, Ontario, demonstrated the importance of community service, helping those who are ill and less fortunate. Nazem attributed the charity work to his parents, Sue and Sam Kadri, who had taught him the importance of giving. Dr. Hassan Mustafa, Co-Chair of the Nazem Kadri charity golf classic stated, “Not only was it (the event) successful from an entertainment, sports and camaraderie point of view but we were fortunate to raise $110,000 for the charities. Not only here in London but in Toronto a couple of months ago, Nazem and his family raised $100,000 for Sick Kids Hospital. The Kadri family needs to be commended on the charitable efforts on that as well. On behalf of the Rob Osman and the London Muslim Mosque and myself, Chair of the Islamic Centre of Southwestern Ontario, we’re very proud of Nazem being part of our community. Nazem and his family have been very active and contributing members of our community. We’ve known him since he

was a child and his siblings his cousins and aunts have been wonderful members of the community and we thank them. Samira Elhindi, Co-Chair of the Nazem Kadri Charity Golf Classic and well-known for her work towards philanthropic causes, stated, “Nazem and the Kadri Family approached the Muslim community leadership about wanting to give back not only to the Muslim Community he grew up in but also to the greater London Community.” The amounts of $50,000 to the Muslim Resource Center, $30,000 to the St. Joseph’s Breast Care Centre, and $30,000 to the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada were presented. Hall of Fame Sponsors, Siskinds Law Firm and Scotiabank delivered messages of congratulations. “The event was so successful thanks to over 50 local business sponsors, dozens of donations in kind and the 148 golfers who attended. The event was sold out 1 week after it was publically announced,” said Dr. Hassan. // Zeba Hashimi, Photo credit: Zeba Hashimi

The Muslim Resource Centre’s

Food Basket Program

“This (Ramadan) is the month of charity in which believer’s sustenance is increased. Whosoever feeds a fasting person or gives a fasting person a single date or a sip of water, to break the fast, for him there shall be forgiveness of his sins and he will be saved from the fire of hell, and for him shall be the same reward as for him (whom he fed).” —The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings upon him) Leading up to Ramadan, the London, Ontario community provided food packages to over 80 families who were in need through the Muslim Resource Centre’s Food Basket Program. This campaign has been running annually for 3 years in collaboration with London Link

Magazine and it is made possible through the support of local businesses and volunteers from the London community. A substantial donation of $1,000 from members of the Al Mehdi Center and over $400 in gift cards was also raised this year to allow recipients to purchase items based on personal need. “I was in tears this Ramadan with the generosity of people and how much they wanted to donate. It is such a blessing to be a part of this incredible community.” said Hanaa Alaubaid, Executive Assistant at the Muslim Resource Centre. A very warm thank you to our local partners: Aladdin’s Foods, Alforat Market, Desi Point, and Kanimagine, as well as everyone who donated and volunteered in order to make this year’s campaign successful! We look forward to running this campaign in the years to come! // Aksa Mahmood // Photo credit: Hanaa AlUbaid

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The Love Your Sister Campaign

On the authority of Abu Hamza Anas Ibn Maalik, the servant of the Messenger of Allah (SWT), from the Prophet (SAW) who said, “None of you [truly] believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself. The holy month of Ramadan is an annual religious tradition filled with mercy, humility, and not to mention lots delicious food—for some. Although the majority of Muslims are blessed enough to indulge in buffets of home-cooked meals, others often pray Isha’ on an empty stomach. In the wider London community, however, there are people who have not experienced a meal quite like a typical Ramadan iftar—and for that there were a group of women in London who had an idea to share an iftar with their community. Sharing what they possess with others who may be struggling during the month of giving. Their understanding of charity in Islam is much broader than

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On Sunday, August 4th, the group of sisters alongside several friends and volunteers, put their effort into dedicating her time in organizing the first event of the new initiative, the Love Your Sister Campaign. The team took advantage of their interest in cooking and used it to benefit the Women’s Community House, a shelter for abused women and children, by providing them with various dishes of a freshly prepared iftar. It was possible for the women to invest in creating a variety of foods due to their planning a week prior to the event—however, all cooking, chopping, frying, and baking was done together in the morning in a single kitchen. The women had quickly set up an online donation fund in order to purchase quality ingredients and create separate entrees to accommodate all preferences. The well-rounded menu consisted of a mixture of cultural, European, and kid-friendly dishes such as grape leaves, shepherd’s pie, and spring rolls. Not to mention, all the food was halal. The considerate menu allowed the crowds of Muslims and non-Muslims at the shelter to recognize the sisters’ deeds while sharing a diverse meal and learning about Islam.

The Love Your Sister Campaign is currently providing the Women’s Community House with over $200 of donation money in the form of gift cards to be distributed among families in need. The campaign also wishes to expand by initiating monthly missions with the help of team organizers and volunteers. If you wish to help, please contact 519-719-7563. It does not matter whether an individual wishes to join an association or initiate their own movement in order to give back to their community. What does matter is that generosity is an attribute that Allah (SWT) expects of all Muslims. // Hala Ghonaim

Leyla and the Sparrow One of my Ramadan resolutions is to make this time more qualitative. On our way to school, in our cheerio covered minivan, the girls and I can practice Quran: Baraka, it’s just as important as a solid breakfast. For the afternoon, it’s audio books. They are the perfect antidote to the post-school run around from play date to music lesson then grocery store (or math, soccer, Arabic, whatever rounds out your child’s life). For quality audio books, I’ll be looking no further than U.K. based Miraj Audio ( The kids and I have already enjoyed two of their titles, “Leyla the Sparrow” and “Dawud and the Giant.” The first is a fictionalized expansion of a Sahih Hadith. The latter is based on several Quranic verses (exact sources are detailed on the Miraj Audio website for further study). The voice actors chosen for each audio

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donating money to the less fortunate, but sacrificing something that simply cannot be reimbursed: their time.

Book Review: Back to school this year involves not just one, but two of our three children. The more complicated our schedules become, the more time we all spend sitting in the car.


book are professional and engaging. There is also tasteful background music, which thoughtfully enhances the storyline (though one can opt for music free audio books too). And the literary content of the audio books? Excellent. And this, of course, is critical. Indeed, recent studies in cognitive science observe that the more engaging the book, the more focused the mind and when a child is truly engaged in a story, the story itself is literally planted in their moral imaginations. Google the following Time article “Reading Literature Makes Us Smarter & Nicer” by Annie Murphy Paul and you’ll see what I mean. However, if you forget to Google this article then remember this wonderful saying by British educator Charlette Mason: “If books are good enough, kids will rise to the challenge.” With Miraj Audio books, I am certain our kids will rise. // Alexis York Lumbard, Children’s Book Author Twitter: @YorkLumbard

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the travel chronicles of Sara Naqwi

Blissful Amsterdam —

Throughout the populous city of the Netherlands, the Dutch capital, Amsterdam, is beautified by its charming canals and dams lined in the center of neighborhoods. A number of locals keep boats instead of cars as their means to go around - forsaking the bicycle over the weekend to enjoy a balmy spring or summer among the gulls and ducks - and tourists are also encouraged to experience Amsterdam in this way. In the south of Holland is situated Keukenhof, considered lovingly as the “Garden of Europe”. The garden is over fifty years old, and as the Netherlands is the world’s largest exporter of flowers, it comes as no surprise that about seven million flower bulbs are planted each year in this nature lover’s paradise. Keukonhof is open from spring to early summer, when the flowers are in bloom, beginning its season from mid-March to mid-May and is frequented by countless locals and tourists. The flowers may be a guest of warm weather, but the winter light brings an ethereal feel to the city. Its warmth and orange hue covers the streets and canal houses even when it snows. One is never separated from nature’s generosity throughout the year in the Netherlands. // Sara Naqwi is a writer and photographer based in the Netherlands whose work is available at

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Eid Mubarak! On behalf of the Board, staff and volunteers at NCCM - the National Council of Canadian Muslims (formerly CAIR.CAN), we wish you and your loved ones a joyful and blessed day of celebrations! To those who donated so generously during this month, thank you. May all of your prayers, good deeds, fasting and charity be accepted.

www.NCCM.CA 1.866.524.0004 P.O. Box 13219, Ottawa ON K2K 1X4

Interfaith Peace Camp of London

Peace: a state of mutual harmony between people or groups, especially in personal relations A word that seems to be scarce in our recent world, the interfaith peace camp of London not only enforced the idea of peace in 6-12 year olds, they emphasized how the three religions are similar and connect through Peace Salam Shalom. The Islamic Centre of Southwest Ontario was one of the three faith groups to join this great initiative along with The Valleyview Mennonite church, and Temple of Israel. The camp’s focus was building friendships and understanding with children across the Abrahamic faith traditions in the London community. The camp took place for the first time in London from August 12-16 with 27 children from all three faiths participating. Each day, the childten would be transported to a different faith congregation highlighting what is special about each religion. It was great to see how the children bonded and were so open minded to learning about the religions. Their itching questions along with sharing their experiences about their religion made the camp a success. On Thursday night, before the last day of the camp, the three faith groups came together for an interfaith potluck graciously hosted by the London Muslim Mosque, where pictures of the camp were shared along with delicious vegetarian foods. Our hope from this camp is that the children continue to understand the idea of peace and carry it throughout their adult life, we trust that they will never forget that they came together for a 5 day camp in 2013 in order to have Peace Salam Shalom. // Sarah Darsha, Photo credit: Sarah Darsha

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Blue Owl Creative Retreats Making time to pause in our busy lives, leaving space for new awareness, creativity and connections to happen... When we do this, I believe our lives become richer. Blue Owl Creative Retreats support guests to be as creative, active or self-reflective as they wish, we nurture the soul with simple unpretentious hospitality. Take a break from your busy life. At Blue Owl Creative Retreats, design the escape that inspires you, and your friends or family. We are a group of passionate people, living in the Goderich area, who believe in the power of using our heads, hands and hearts creatively. When we focus our attention on learning and creating, our tension and anxieties melt away. Experience the fun of doing and connecting in this relaxing, historic town setting. Create your Retreat Weekend from a remarkable list of local artists, crafters and health practitioners or keep it simple and stroll the Lake Huron boardwalk. Eat

delicious vegetarian meals at the Guest House or take a short walk and eat at restaurants on Goderich’s historic town square. Whether you’re looking for creative adventure, personal exploration or wish to simply enjoy time with family or friends, we will provide the experience that meets your dreams. Good Life recipe: pause, leave a gap to connect with ourselves, others and nature, be creative, learn something. Visit: to book a visit to pause and reflect! // London Link Review

Vegan ties hold the silk Jaan J. Ties Whether you are a physician getting ready in the morning or a high school student preparing for his speech a tie can be a signature mark of professionalism. Ties have been made and worn the same way since the 1600’s and are considered a must-have accessory for any meeting, interview or a formal get-together! Primarily when one thinks of a designer label or a luxury gift for a man, a tie is usually on top of the list. What better way then to tell someone congratulations or how much you care by presenting them with a brand new tie. What people are unaware of is how silk ties are actually made. The process of making a silk tie, much like anything with silk in it revolves around the idea of harnessing and harvesting the silk worm. Yes, that’s right the silk ties that we pay hundreds of dollars for result in the killing of thousands and thousands of silk worms! So what is a modern natural alternative? Well, Vegan ties of course! Jaan J. is relatively

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a new company that is taking the tie market by storm! Since 2006 they have introduced a new type of tie- a vegan-earth-friendly tie that has even won the PETA’s Proggy Award. This award recognizes companies, people, and products for innovative and animal-friendly alternative ideas and products. PETA is of course world renowned as the global organization and stands for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Jaan J. also serve the Muslim market as Muslim men do not want to wear ‘silk’ ties as per Islamic ruling and do not find many alternatives that may not have the exquisite finish of silk. As Muslims it’s not only our duty to abstain from non-halal foods, and non-halal items but it’s also important for us to encourage the ethical treatment of animals. Jaan J’s core ideal values are to create “vegan ties” for individuals who prefer not to wear silk for personal, religious or health reasons. Jaan J has a great mission statement that works with experienced individuals encouraging the production of non-silk ties that are wearable and fashionable. The Jaan J. ties are designed to appeal to all age groups of men and with the introduction of their famous satin ties in full swing the next step for this start up organization is to give back to other non-profit communities. Jaan J. continues to expand their outreach; They even let customers design their own ties in their online design studio for a more personalized look and are introducing a new cotton line of ties to complement their futuristic brand. I know for sure that the next tie that I wear will be a Jaan J.  Visit their website for more details: // Hamza Samin // Photo credit: Jaan J Ties


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Recipes —


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Zucchini, grated with skin on- 1½ cups Chopped walnuts- 1/2 cup Brown sugar- 1 cup Olive oil or vegetable oil- 1/2 cup Vanilla extract- 1½ tsp Eggs, large- 2, at room temperature All purpose flour- 1½ cups Baking powder- ½ tsp Baking soda- ½ tsp Ground cinnamon- 1 1/2 tsp Salt- ¼ tsp

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Wash the zucchini’s well and grate it on the larger holes of a grater, you could keep the skin. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground cinnamon and salt. In another bowl, combine brown sugar, vanilla extract and oil. Add eggs one at a time and beat it using an electric hand mixer. Add the flour mix to the beaten egg/sugar, beat it until well incorporated. Add the grated zucchini and chopped walnuts, combine well to the batter using a spatula. Grease a 9 inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Pour the prepared batter into the pan, fill only ¾ th of the pan. Place the pan on the middle rack in the oven. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a fork inserted into the middle of the bread comes out clean.Remove the pan from the oven, transfer to a cooling rack and let cool down for a few minutes. Using a sharp knife, slice it and serve with coffee or tea.



For making dates batter Dates, pitted and chopped- 6 All purpose flour- 1 cup Milk- 1¼ cups or enough to make a smooth and flowing batter Vanilla extract- 1 tsp Other ingredients Butter, unsalted- ½ tbsp/ crepes, for cooking crepes For filling Chocolate frosting or any kind of frosting Almonds, sliced Walnuts, chopped

In a blender, combine the dates, flour, milk and vanilla extract and blend to a smooth batter. The batter should be flowing and smooth. Place a large non-stick pan over medium heat, add ½ tbsp butter and let it melt. Pour one to two large spoonful of dates batter, using the back of your spoon spread it and make into large round shape. Let the bottom side cook, flip it over and cook the other side too. Transfer to a plate. While making the next crepes, remove the pan from the heat, let the hot pan cool down for a minute and then pour the batter. If you pour the batter over a hot pan it gets hard to spread it evenly. After the crepes have cooled down a bit, spread the chocolate frosting over it. Garnish with 1 handful almonds and walnuts. Fold the crepe to a semi circle, again fold it to make a triangular shape. If you prefer, while serving you could even drizzle chocolate syrup over the dates crepes. Serve this for breakfast or brunch and enjoy with your family. // Recipes & photos by Thasneen Ansi

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London Link’s Marketplace

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Places & Photography // Spring Garden, Goderich, Ontario

Book Review // Turquoise: A Chef’s Travels in Turkey By Greg and Lucy Malouf Turkey is a much sought-after destination for travel. It is enjoyed for both its beauty and food adventures. Turkish cusine is a fine blend of Asian and Mediterranean cuisines. In the book, Turquoise, Greg and Lucy Malouf take us on a Turkish adventure of sights, tastes and travels. They visit spice markets and soup kitchens and take us to ancient teahouses. The recipes in this book which accompany excellent photographs are inspiring and capture the authentic flavors that make the Turkish cuisine stand out from the ancient ruins of Pergamum to modern day Istanbul. With beautiful photographs, Turquoise is a great book to share this delightful Turkish expedition.

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About the photographer: Marilyn Potter works primarily with her digital camera, intrigued by the many facets of digital photography and image manipulation. Marilyn strives to capture images of nature’s beauty and rural life through the seasons. Recently she has enjoyed producing blank note cards highlighting her photographs as well as Glicée prints of her images. With an eye for detail, her photos bring to light nature’s perfection. She has also published numerous photo journals for her clients on topics ranging from private homes and gardens, family memories, weddings and theatre work.

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London Link September 2013  

London Link Volume 3, Issue 5