‘Taste of Arabia’- the Middle Eastern food festival at The Market, Ritz Carlton

Ritz Carlton is truly one of those finest places where you would want to go again and again. Be it for the amazing food they serve, the hospitality or the experience they have on offer mixed with the wonderful essence of a storied cultural past. Recognized as “the gold standard” of hospitality, the hotel epitomizes contemporary elegance befitting this modern ‘Garden City’.

Ritz Carlton Bangalore embarks on a new culinary journey as they bring back the remarkable
’Taste of Arabia’ - the Middle Eastern food festival at The Market on special demand once again for food lovers in Bangalore. Chef Rami Almaket who is well known for his expertise in Middle- Eastern Cuisine has flown all the way from Dubai to bring to life the culinary splendor of the Middle East and creating an unforgettable cultural and culinary journey for guests to enjoy.

Taste of Arabia features signature tastes from the Syrian, Moroccan, Persian and Lebanese cuisines. With a complete new twist and so much to experience under one truss it’s something which you shouldn’t miss. Flavors which have evolved from the silk and spice routes that were once traveled by the men of the desert. With interactive cooking stations, amazing huge spread of food and authentic Middle Eastern flavors the festival is the ideal setting for people looking to indulge their inner connoisseur while sharing quality time with friends and family.

Some of the best picks from the Middle Eastern food festival that you should definitely try:

Muhammara: A distinct blend of hot pepper, nuts, breadcrumbs and olive oil Muhammara is a Syrian dish. Serves well the purpose of a dip, spread or sauce, and is consumed widely with pita bread or as a sauce with grilled meats. The flavours of olive and the hot pepper giving it a strong spicy taste, the nuts and the breadcrumbs add to the entire texture and open up the flavours.

Fattoush: Was the best Fattoush I have ever had in Bangalore. Perfectly seasoned veges and the right mix of herbs, oils and spices. This Middle Eastern Salad had a real appeal as it was filled with vibrant colors from the huge mix of vegetables used into it and bursting with fresh flavors, it’s healthy, lean and a delicious way to begin your meal.

Lamb Tagine with Dry Fruit: A traditional Moroccan lamb tagine simmered in a long list of spices like cumin, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, saffron, garlic, onion, kosher salt, olive oil, lemon and many more. A true delight for food lovers, the flavors were so prominent and had infused in each strand of the flesh. A must have from the ‘Taste of Arabia’.

Beetroot Moutabel: Again a dip which is considered to be a must on the Middle Eastern table. A traditional Syrian specialty, made with vegetables like beet, potato and zucchini. The mix of baked beets some pureed and grated gave it the extra texture, and the lemon, tahini and yogurt giving the sweet sour taste, finally topped with authentic Arabian seasoning. I really enjoyed the beet root which we usually skip if served as a salad. An amazing easy to make option that can be added to our home preparations.

It was really inspirational and overwhelming to speak to Chef Rami about the entire preparation, tweaks he had made, blend of spices, hard work the entire team has put in etc. Here’s some interesting segments from my conversation with Chef Rami Almaket about the ‘Taste of Arabia’ and Middle Eastern Cuisine.

Inside the mind of the genius chef of Ritz Carlton, Dubai

Tejas: One dish that you love cooking over and over again, the story behind why you cherish it so much?
Chef Rami Almaket: Harrak Espaoo (Lentils cooked with pomegranate syrup, tamarind juice, coriander, garlic, olive oil). Story behind this dish is I grew up eating at home and I still follow my grandmother’s recipe.

Tejas: Cooking tip for anyone who is beginning to cook the Arabian Cuisine?
Chef Rami Almaket: You must cook with love. Put all your love and heart and the outcome will be nothing but the best.

Tejas: What do you think is the most challenging ingredient to work with, when it comes to the Arabian Cuisine?
Chef Rami Almaket: Tahini is a but difficult for people who are just starting to try their hands on the Middle Eastern Cuisine.

Tejas: Which are the most prominent flavors or spices used in the Arabian Cuisine?
Chef Rami Almaket: Cumin, Cinnamon, Fresh Coriander, Olive Oil, Garlic, Pomegranate Syrup.

Tejas: What are your favorites from the spread?
Chef Rami Almaket: Beetroot Moutabel

This special food festival ‘Taste of Arabia’- the Middle Eastern food festival at The Market, Ritz Carlton runs till 9th Oct 2015 so make sure you don’t miss it.

Till then keep exploring, keep eating and keep sharing for the love of food.


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