A multi-cultural, internationally anticipated festival, the Dubai Food Carnival –taking place between 21 and 22 February – aims to take the UAE’s foodie scene by storm with the promise of it being the largest event of its kind in the region. With over 100 food and drink stalls, there will be a plethora of culinary events, sampling and demonstrations on offer.
So, what defines the Dubai Food Carnival apart from others? As part of its initiatives to raise community awareness of the abundant high-quality meats, vegetables and fruits available in the UAE, locally-sourced produce will constitute the majority of ingredients used in a series of exclusive epicurean promotions and public cooking demonstrations in The Chef’s Dome, a dedicated live cooking area.
With some of the biggest names in global gastronomy already on-board – including international TV sensation, Chef John Torode, Lebanon’s Maroun Chedid, voted ‘Chef of the Year 2013’ by the Toques Blanches du Monde, and India’s culinary maestro, Sanjeev Kapoor.The regional culinary scene will be represented by Manal Al Alem, the ‘Queen of the Arabic kitchen’, Chef Tarek Ibrahim, Fatafeat TV celebrity and Meat & Livestock Australia MENA’s corporate executive chef, Chef Mohammad Orfali, Executive Chef, Fatafeat TV, Uwe Micheel, Director of Kitchens at Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek, and President of the Emirates Culinary Guild; and, finally, Chef Toh Chye Siong, Chef de Cuisine at the award-winning Hakkasan Dubai.
International celebrity Chef Silvena Rowe, the star of BBC food shows, Country Show Cook-Off and Saturday Kitchen, is leading the locally-sourced charge. As well as teaming up with Greenheart Organic Farms to run Silvena’s Souq, a dedicated organic market where Carnival-goers can purchase fresh, locally-grown produce, Chef Rowe, Consultant Chef at the five-star H Hotel Dubai, will inject a fine dining element into the Carnival with six exclusive, organic-themed lunches and dinners at Carnival Rowe – a specially-designed, celebrity restaurant.
“I want to highlight the amazing quality of local ingredients and show how easy it is to create beautiful dishes using only products grown and reared in the UAE,” said Chef Rowe. “Not many people know that 98 per cent of food in Dubai is imported, so I’ve put together a completely organic menu where 98 per cent of the produce used is locally farmed. There’s also a strong Emirati or Arabian focus to the menu and, of course, it’s totally alcohol free – I can promise people an authentic taste of organic Arabic.”
Other events include the Great Yalla BBQ, an open BBQ competition sponsored by Weber and the MLA and featuring members of the public in a head-to-head challenge on 21 February before a Grand Final on 22 February, The Extreme Food Challenge, a marathon chili-eating competition, and My Dad Can Cook in association with 7 Days newspaper, a week-long cooking competition with its Grand Final on 22 February.
The UAE is once again flexing its culinary muscles and FOUR is excited to see the Dubai Food Carnival show its epicurean delights. Find out more here.