Abu Dhabi to showcase Emirati cuisine in hotels

Emirati cuisine will be showcased on restaurant menus and via room service within four- and five-star establishments
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Chef Khulood Atiq will encourage hotels to embrace traditional cuisine.
Chef Khulood Atiq will encourage hotels to embrace traditional cuisine.

In a bid to showcase authentic Emirati cuisine to its visitors, Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi) is set to roll-out the Emirati Cuisine & Hospitality Capacity Building Programme.

Under the programme all four- and five-star hotels across the emirate will feature and promote Emirati culture through its cuisine.

The programme will establish a framework of regular training, monitoring and reviewing in order to ensure that Emirati culinary items are featured in food and beverage (F&B) outlets in the finest hotels and hotel apartments across the emirate.

By collaborating with leading industry partners, TCA Abu Dhabi will train and accredit culinary employees with the fundamental skills required to prepare Emirati cuisine and reference the rich heritage that is paramount to its authenticity.

To maintain a consistent level of year-round engagement, TCA Abu Dhabi will also conduct competitions across participating hotels to identify the ‘Best Emirati Culinary Promotion Programme’ and the ‘Best Chef for Emirati Cuisine’.

Commenting on the initiative, HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Director General of TCA Abu Dhabi said: “Abu Dhabi is a melting pot of cultures and the authenticity of Emirati cuisine has been somewhat lost in the contemporary renditions of traditional cuisine.

“Through this programme, we strive to conserve and promote the emirate’s culture, history and traditions. A key to that is using our rich cuisine to ensure optimal engagement for visitors seeking fully immersive cultural experiences,” Ghobash said.

TCA Abu Dhabi Sultan Al Dhaheri acting executive director of tourism sector said: “This initiative is being launched to showcase the incredible gastronomic fare that is the hallmark of Emirati cuisine. Visitors will have the opportunity to experience the vast variety of flavours that are essential to a local Bedouin meal, served in Abu Dhabi’s hospitality sector.”

Leading the programme is TCA Abu Dhabi’s Emirati cuisine consultant Chef Khulood Atiq – the UAE’s first female celebrity chef – who is aiding F&B staff on training, consultation and how to correctly prepare Emirati dishes for an accurate representation of local food.

Under the initiative, hotel restaurants are encouraged to serve up an Emirati culinary station with a minimum of three items clearly labelled on breakfast, lunch and dinner buffets. In addition, each dish will feature a tent card explaining the brief history of the food and the ingredients used. Meanwhile, room service menus will feature a minimum of two Emirati breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes in a la carte and room service menus.

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