Biryani v Biryani

What is it? I know it’s more than just curry and rice. And it’s not pilau – that’s lighter, I think. And is it the same as Pilaf? Or isn’t it? I wikipedia-ed it, and it says it is spiced meat or vegetables and plain rice cooked separately, then brought together and layered. This differentiates…

Come dine with me.

Foodies. The word itself is cozy. It’s got a lovely long vowel sound that makes one pout, followed by one that encourages a smile. a kiss and a grin – worthy of replacing the word “cheese” during a photo shoot. So why is it that I find myself gritting my teeth when I bring this…

Venice Transplants

Imports… In Dubai, it would be nigh impossible to live without them. Even historically, this region has been a centre of trade – silk, spices, gold, food, it all comes and goes. When I do my weekly shopping, I return home with beef from Australia, prawns from Oman, apples from China, oranges from Spain, potatoes…

Happy Birthday

Lucrecia is a lovely gal. She’s happy all the time. She brings energy and giggles into any room, but not only that, she’s worldly, opinionated, unabashed and particularly good at funny voices. I had always thought she was smarter than the average bear, but then she invited me to Angel’s 4th birthday. She was going…

Sticky Date Pudding

It’s always baffled me in this part of the world. Why is there a complete lack of sticky date pudding on menus here? It is one of the best desserts in the world, and we are living in the centre of all date production. It’s a travesty.  Recently, a bunch of fellow foodies and I…

Giving veggies a hiding

My mum used to make me eat brussel sprouts. Not the tiny little gourmet buttered brussel sprouts with roasted chestnuts that you find on a lavish European Christmas table. Oh no – these were 1970s Australian versions – bitter, olivey-grey, egg-sized, boiled monsters of torture that would keep me sitting at the table twisting my…

The essence of Italy and Emporio Armani Caffe

What do you think of when someone says “Italian”? For me, foremost, it’s always food. Pizza, followed by pasta. Gingham tablecloths, chunky white glazed terracotta pitchers filled with light red wine. Overhead pergolas creaking under the weight of hundred-year-old grape vines. Patchwork quilt panoramas over blanketed fields and forest of Tuscany. Possibly a little drunken…