What’s even better than warm, freshly baked cookies? Warm, freshly baked cookies that have been beautifully boxed up just for me by a very talented friend! Agriculturalist turned recipe blogger Fahmim Arif reminisces about the beautifully crumbly, textured Nankhatai, a buttery cookie that is ever so popular in the East Indian state of Assam (India) where we both originate.

Orange Blossom Nankhatai baked, stylized & shot by the lovely Fahmim Arif from mymagicingredient.com

Fahmim discovered orange blossom when she landed here in the UAE, and recreated her favorite cookies with a dash of flavor from her adopted home. Read on for her recipe.

There’s something magical about Indian weddings; the colors, the costumes, the food and the rituals, followed by the melodrama of two families coming together as one. I’ve seen it on the silver screen many a time, but sadly I have not had many opportunities to be a part of the live fanfare.

So imagine my joy when I got invited to be a part of a Baraati! A ‘baraati’ is a North Indian term referring to the groom’s side of the party. The baraati is a procession of guests who lead the groom (demurely sitting on a horse). The group is responsible for all the fanfare, dancing and noise making it known to the bridal party that the groom has arrived.

But imagine this… we had no groom! However, what we did have was a breathtakingly beautiful venue housing the biggest number of horses in Dubai. This was a blogger-managed event hosted by the very lovely Monica Kapila from the DoInDubai.com blog, and the event was at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club.

Chef Glady has a huge fan following, yet he is too humble to notice. His impeccable plating skills at Per Te saw his creations going viral across social media, and his artsy retakes on Italian classics have made native chefs go green with envy.

I featured Chef Glady in my food blogger column in Ahlan Masala! magazine, and was eagerly awaiting a chance to visit him at his newest venture; 24 Karat at the Marriot (Al Jaddaf, Dubai).

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The brand new restaurant opened its gilded doors to the public only a few weeks ago, and looks every bit the fine-dining Italian restaurant that befits the works of this genius chef.I loved the deep brown wooden finishing, the plush seating and the very European-style chandeliers that lined the counters, exuding a magical hue of gold across.

14th Feb is just 4 days away! Where are you heading this Valentine’s? If its variety you seek, Nassima Royal Hotel is an ideal dining destination to consider. We were invited for the Valentine’s Day preview at their all-day buffet dining restaurant Celsius, yet the wonderful team had more in store for us than a lavish spread.

In true V-Day spirit, we were teamed together with our better halves to have a go at cake icing. Heart-shaped Red Velvet cakes were placed on every work station, and the Chef helped us slice it horizontally, and pipe in the icing. We tried our hand at rosette swirls, and I think our cake had more cream than cake!

Na3Na3 (pronounced ‘Nana’), is a well-established all-day dining restaurant located on the lobby level of The Address – Dubai Mall. Essentially a Lebanese restaurant, the theme here keeps changing on a daily basis.

We were at Na3Na3 the Thursday before last, just when Dubai was experiencing its freakish rains. I was indulging in a bout of retail therapy in The Dubai Mall, and discovered a shortcut to Na3Na3 through Bloomingdales! You can park in the mall, or use the hotel’s valet service.

Like all little girls, my little one loves playing dress-up. She has a special liking for ‘twirling dresses’ like the princesses of Disney, and the very colorful Indian clothing of Bollywood (all of which she calls a ‘sari’).

At the Numaish exhibition a few seasons ago, I happened to walk into the stall of Fayon Kids. Based in Delhi, this brand of children’s clothing takes traditional Indian outfits for little ones to another level alltogether. Not only do they do the very traditional garb, but they also have Indo-Western pieces for little princesses, and even miniature copies of costumes seen on Bollywood sirens.

Fayon Kids sent this absolutely stunning lehenga for my little girl, and she’s been bugging me to let her wear it ever since.

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Honored to be the featured Food Blogger in Ahlan Masala! magazine for the 5th week in a row 🙂

Tribes Carnivore is a meat glutton’s sanctuary. This South African chain, with its colorful tribal decor, wallet-friendly pricing and hip-swaying live entertainment, has always been one of my favorite spots to dine at in The Dubai Mall.

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I was recently invited for a tasting session to try out their brand new menu, and was in for an even bigger treat. You see, the last time I visited Tribes, it was during the warmer months. This time round, they had a table booked for me on the terrace… and what a magical experience it was!