DXB Food Fest Update!
Thursday 12th Feb: Dubai Food Carnival
Host to over 80 exhibitors including the usual food court and stand alone restaurants suspects, the Dubai International Marine Club was definitely a foodies wonderland on Thursday evening. With dance tracks in the background and occasional MC shout-outs to food stations, it was a great atmosphere overall, and there was plenty for us veggies.
The fresh coconut juice from the Bahamas was first on the agenda, which was a refreshing way to start off the evening. Next was Ghaf Kitchen for their ‘healthy take on fast food,’ the quinoa hot dog, which was ground with parmesan and lemon juice and rolled in breadcrumbs before being lightly fried and topped with chitpole mayonnaise and coriander salsa. Nicely crunchy with flavorsome sauces and a slight bitterness to finish, very interesting! Apparently two thirds of Ghaf kitchens sales come from vegetarian food, something unbeknownst to VeggieBuzz. Another highlight was Chef Silvena’s demonstration; she cooked up an Omnia specialty: gluten, sugar and dairy-free vegetable pad thai, a favourite of Sheikh Hamdan, who is apparently quite the fan of raw food! It was more of a salad, but the julienned vegetables definitely boasted delicious pad thai flavours!
The liquid nitrogen ice cream stall was a visual treat, which really stood out! This avant-garde technique involved large amounts of gas being released from the mixer as the ice cream churned. It was then blow-torched, scooped out into a cup and loaded with toppings.
Friday 13th Feb: Taste of Peru
With food, drinks, live Peruvian music, and soft red lighting, there was definitely romance in the air at the Madinat Amphitheatre on Friday evening, the eve of Valentine’s Day. While there wasn’t much for us veggies (just a quinoa salad dish and a couple of desserts), it was still a perfect way to start the evening for a quick snack and drink before moving onwards for dinner.
Saturday 14th Feb: Ripe Night Market
A quick stop at Al Barsha Pond Park on Saturday evening was a great way to round off the weekend. Packed with families and baby strollers, the running track was barely recognizable! From local organic fresh fruit and vegetables, to food and dessert stalls (including one food truck!), to clothing and accessories stalls, it was definitely quite a hit for its first day!
Two notable stops for veggies (and vegans) were right near the main entrance. The Rawganix stall had some of their delicious looking raw and vegan options on display, however there were also other vegetarian and cooked options. Samples of vegan cheese and iced coffee with almond milk were well received, and the pistachio falafel with baba ganoush, tahini, and red pepper sauce was a delicious alternative to traditional chickpea based falafel. This was devoured within minutes, which says it all!
The founder of Coco Yogo was kind enough to offer tastes of the vegan cream cheese, frozen yogurt and the delicious cashew based vegan cheesecake, along with the various toppings of berry, date & orange zest, and mango passion fruit. The chocolate dream ice cream was the absolute winner. This coconut milk based ice cream had a rich creamy texture and delicious chocolate flavour - a perfect dairy free alternative to regular ice cream!
The Ripe Night Market is going to be a regular event at Barsha Park that will take place every Saturday evening from 4pm - 12am, and will extend beyond the Food Festival. VeggieBuzz will definitely be back, even if it’s just for the vegan chocolate ice cream!
On our List:
We didn’t get the chance to check out the Beach Canteen at Kite Beach this weekend, but we have a feeling it’s going to be good when we do! Incase you have already been, let us know your thoughts! If not, it will be open until Saturday 28th Feb.
The Urban Farm
This one day event on Saturday 28th Feb at the Creekside, Bur Dubai Creek is definitely on our list. We can't wait to get a taste of some homegrown street food concepts, and we sure hope there are veggie options!Sumati Menda
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