We all have an alter ego, another aspect of our day to day facade that often gets overshadowed with the formalities of a stiff-collared designation. I have been blogging about food for nearly two years now, and it never fails to impress me when I manage to uncover a hidden chef in someone quite unexpected!

By day, Paul Alexander Estorffe is a Senior Communications Manager at The Qode, one of Dubai’s most reputed PR communications houses. I happened to stumble upon his Instagram account @paul_estorffe and was pretty amazed by the kind of spectacular dishes this ‘home cook’ dishes out! Do follow him and have a look for yourselves. In today’s guest post, Paul has been kind enough to share a simple yet very fancy-sounding recipe he has created all by himself; Paul’s Kipper Pate with Drambuie and Toast. I’ll be trying this out myself this week, thanks Paul!

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Diwali, the auspicious Indian Festival of Lights, is just around the corner. We often associate Indian festivities with bright colours, pomp and music, and a whole load of tantalizing sweets. But the feasting is definitely not restricted to dessert…

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The very talented Chef Pradeep Khullar from Jodhpur Royal Dining (at Murooj Rotana, Dubai), has been very busy creating a whole new lineup of delectable festive treats, and their special Diwali Menu is out now! Do give it a try.

One of the brand new, innovative dishes on Jodhpur’s Diwali Menu is the Makkai Palak, Red Raddish Carpaccio. 

When visiting my husband’s hometown of Shillong, the very picturesque hill-station capital of Meghalaya (India), we always look forward to visiting our very talented aunt, Mrs. Nurara Hazarika. Fondly known as Bulbuli Aunty, her talents in the kitchen have turned her love for cooking and baking into a very profitable business.

Bulbuli Aunty’s dinner parties are always an elaborate feast, with a delicious array of dishes from all corners of the globe. Over the years, she has a steady flow of novice cooks, signing up for her cooking classes and these have now expanded beyond the borders of Shillong.

Today, she has very generously shared a special cake recipe with us. Simple as it looks stunning, Bulbuli Aunty’s Chocolate Velvet Cream Recipe is sure to impress even the most cynical of dinner guests!

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You don’t have to be Indian to know Asha Bhosle. With a career in Bollywood spanning over six decades, generations have grown up humming her melodious tunes. Her contribution to Indian music is legendary, but what many people may not be aware of is her flare for the kitchen.

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Despite a very busy career, Asha Bhosle finds respite in creating new dishes for her family and her elite circle of friends in the Bollywood fraternity.

Seeing how much her dishes were being appreciated, Asha Bhosle decided it was time the world got a taste of her cooking too and this is how Asha’s, her chain of Indian fine-dining restaurants have spread across the globe.

Today I have the immense pleasure of sharing an excerpt of my interview with the legend herself; Asha Bhosle! She has even been kind enough to share her recipe for Muscat Gosht with us. Read on for more.

In our household, we are pretty addicted to Master Chef Australia. Hubby and I take great pleasure in putting bets on contestant rankings, and I’ve always been in awe with the judging skills and straight-up informative feed back Chefs Gary, George and Matt seem to be able to give at the drop of a hat.

We are foodies. I blog about food, yet actually being a judge at a cooking contest perturbs me. And then I had the honor of being invited onto the judging panel of the annual Grandma’s Recipe Contest in Arabian Courtyard & Spa this month! Absolutely honored, I decided to give it a go and put on my Master Chef hat 🙂

I am spending the last few precious days of Ramadan in India with the extended family. Iftars here are rather different from the UAE. When fasting in Dubai, we tend to focus on the socializing aspect of Ramadan, and are spoilt for choice with the plethora of Iftars and Suhoor buffets on offer.

In my husband’s hometown of Shillong (Meghalaya), Iftars are far more solemn and people prefer to enjoy them within the privacy of their own homes with close family. Neighbours exchange dishes, but mainly meet up in the mosque for the extended prayers.

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I spent the last couple of days at my maternal aunt Zuleikha Hazarika’s place, and had the pleasure of watching her very talented cook, Ali, whip up a giant pot full of traditional Chicken Pulao (an aromatic chicken pilaf fragranced with the spicy notes of cardamom, cloves and cinnamon). In the true spirit of Ramadan, the pulao was divided up into boxes, and distributed across the neighbourhood to close friends, as well as the less fortunate.

I’ve been raving about my dinner at Siraj, the Emirati restaurant with a contemporary twist located in Souk Al Bahar, Downtown Dubai. One of the decadent desserts I had the pleasure of tasting was their Luqaimat, a well loved Emirati delicacy of deep fried dumplings.

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Crisp on the outside and dreamily soft inside, with the delicious flavours of cream, sugar and cardamom kicking in with every mouthful, these delicious plump little pillows truly are hard to resist – in fact why resist at all?

One of the biggest perks of blogging is getting to meet very interesting, creative and likeminded individuals. A few months ago, I had a chance encounter with the lovely, bubbly Yvette Ali. I fell in love with her endearing accent, and my heart missed a beat when she mentioned she originates from the very colourful country of Puerto Rico. As we were at a foodie event (at the launch of the BBC Good Food show to be precise), I had a long list of questions for her about her native cuisine. Till I met Yvette, my idea of Puerto Rican dishes was vaguely similar to Spanish offerings. However, Yvette tells me their food has a great deal of African and Latino influences thrown in as well!

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By day she freelances as a consultant (do check out her site by clicking here), but in her spare time Yvette whips up a feast that takes her back to her cultural roots. In today’s guest post, Yvette gives us a vivid glimpse into the world of Puerto Rican cuisine, and ends by generously sharing a recipe for her all-time favorite Escabeche de Pescado con Vianda. Read on for more!