Top 5 Traditional Food Items of UAE.

Author Sushant Published on April 16th 2019


Without the traditional food of the area where you are traveling, your traveling experience is incomplete. I am going to talk about top 5 traditional food items of U.A.E. without trying them your trip to United Arab Emirates (UAE) will be incomplete.


1: Stuffed Camel:

This is the dish where the entire camel is cooked and served with rice and eggs. Various Emirati restaurants are serving this dish, in which the camel is marinated with various spices like cumin, curd, turmeric, and super expensive saffron. After that, it is stuffed with dry fruits, and other spices and steamed with coal. Once cooked it is garnished with ghee, saffron and other spices and served with rice and eggs. Nowadays easy availability of spices is made restaurants experiment with spices, otherwise traditional Arab dish used locally available spices and food. It is the dish wherein you need to have at least 20 people with you because of the size of the camel, the amount of food is too much for 20 people also.

2: Al Harees:

Al Harees is a dish of boiled and coarsely-ground wheat, mixed with meat. Harees means to mash or to squash. It is as consistent as porridge it is a popular dish in the Persian Gulf, especially in the month of Ramadan. Harees is also the origin of Haleem. The wheat is soaked overnight, then simmered in water along with butter and meat. This mixture is beaten and seasoned and the remaining liquid is strained. Harees is then garnished with cinnamon and ghee. Every tribe has a different traditional way of preparing Harees.

3: Shawarma:

Arab Shawarma finds its origins in the Ottoman Empire, turkey. Vertical Rotisserie was invented in the early 19th century in Turkey and fast traveled its way into Arab peninsula. Originally it was made with lamb or mutton but chicken and turkey also found there a way to the dish. It is one of the most famous street foods in the Arabian peninsula.
Thin cuts of seasoned marinated lamb, mutton, chicken or turkey are used to prepare Shawarma. Slices of meat are stacked on a skewer and sometimes lamb fat or butter is added to provide juiciness and flavor. A motorized or manual spit slowly turns the stack of meat in front of a heating element, continuously roasting the outer layer. Shavings are cut off the rotating stack for serving, customarily with a long, sharp knife.

 I have listed down three best places to eat Shwarma in Dubai:

Al Ijaza Cafeteria:  It is Located at Jumeirah, it is crowded all the time and a great place to stop by for late night shawarma when the crowd is a little less. If you want to sit in your car and enjoy the shwarma, then honk your horn and someone will come to take your order.

Al Safadi: With three different locations in the UAE, Al Safa, Trade Centre, and Al Rigga, Al Safadi is quite accessible to tourists. It is one of the most popular Lebanese spots in town. They serve delicious and authentic shawarma.

Belad Al-Sham: Two outlets they have, Al Barsha and Al Qusais. Seems like a small and insignificant shop from outside but once you go inside and have a look around you’ll be happy you did. They offer different varieties of chicken shawarma including a Mexican shawarma plate with great quality ingredients. 

4: Al Machboos:

It is the national dish of Bahrain, means spiced chicken and rice. It is similar to Biryani but with different cooking methods, spices, and other ingredients. Main spices are black pepper, paprika, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and nutmeg, unique ingredients are boiled and sun-dried lemons and rosewater.

5: Maqluba 

Maqluba is a traditional Iraqi dish served throughout the Levant. It literally means "upside-down". The dish includes fried vegetables, meat, and rice placed in a pot, which is then flipped upside down when served.  Origins of this dish go back centuries. The dish can include a variety of vegetables like eggplant, fried tomatoes, cauliflower and potatoes mixed with either lamb or chicken. Vegetables and meat are carefully placed in the pot to be cooked in layers so that when the pot is inverted vegetables, meat and rice are seen as layers in a cake. Maqluba can be served with fresh yogurt or salad or both with various toppings.

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Hi, this is Sushant Bhasin, a normal corporate guy who is extremely fond of travelling and exploring new places. Travel is my passion and every place I visit is a wonderfully unique experience. Through my travel blogs, I want you to experience this world and envision my most memorable experiences.



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