Meet Etienne de Swardt, the provocative perfumer behind the much talked about French perfume range Etat Libre d’Orange. Etienne is launching his controversial brand here in the UAE, and The Tezzy Files had the pleasure of having a chitchat with this enigmatic perfumer cum business maestro.

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Happy Women’s Day to all you phenomenal women out there! To celebrate, I thought I’d do a post on one of my all-time favorite fashion icons, Iris Apfel.

Whoever said eccentric dressing and growing old should never mix has obviously not heard of Iris Apfel. She has broken all the conventional molds of fashion and beauty, a true inspiration for every woman out there.

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Meet the very enterprising Mouna Abbassy, the founder and creative head of Izil, a brand new beauty range from Morocco.image001

In a cut-throat marketplace where brands come and go, Izil stands out from the crowd and has created a special niche for itself by offering high-quality organic beauty products that are based on authentic, age-old Moroccan beauty traditions. 

Meet the absolutely stunning Rashi Chowdhary. Rashi is a nutritionist by profession. She is absolutely obsessed with good, nutritious food and her passion for teaching people to eat right has led her into creating the decadently good ‘Protein Bakeshop’.

Rashi Chowdhary nutritionist

And read on for a recipe for a guilt-free sweet treat!

Katherine Lorente is from the Philippines. Her bubbly persona masks her age, and makes her perfect for her daytime role as a receptionist for the Q-Gourmet head office based in Sharjah.

In Katherine I found yet another master chef! Katherine has an innate love for cooking, and has her very own culinary business back home in the Philippines.

pancit palabok philippines recipe

Hanan Taha (or rather Dr. Hanan Taha!) and I go back a long time. We used to go to school together, and although we haven’t met since high-school we still keep abreast on each other’s lives via Facebook (thank goodness for social media!).

Hanan is based in Houston, Texas and is a qualified dermatologist. With a friend who works wonders on skincare for a living, I had to steal some beauty tips off her!

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In the Middle East, weekends fall on Fridays and Saturdays. On Fridays, Muslims the world over offer the very special ‘jumma’ prayer, and this is traditionally followed by a lavish lunch with the family.

Biryani, a decadent rice pilaf layered with succulently spiced meat, tends to be a Friday lunch favorite.

My dear friend Sana Wahid makes the most delicious Yakhni Pulao, and has agreed to share her family’s secret recipe with us.

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Nischay Kaul has been working in the publications industry for many years now, but I uncovered his secret passion – cooking!

Nischay originates from Kashmir, the very scenic, highly disputed Northern-most part of India. Here Nischay gives us an introduction to Kashmiri cuisine, and how he’s managed to combine his passion for cooking with his career in publications.

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…and he’s even shared his most treasured, authentic Kashmiri Rogan Josh recipe with us!

My family originates from Assam, the North Eastern state of India. You might have heard of Assam if you’re a serious tea drinker. Or perhaps you’ve heard of our one-horned rhinos or the world’s hottest chili, the ‘Bhoot Jolokia’. Assam also boasts of having Asia’s oldest oil refinery. Like every state of India, Assam is seeped in its own unique set of cultures and traditions.

Bhogali Bihu festivities are in the air. This is the festival of feasting and marks the end of the harvest season. Assamese households get busy preparing traditional Bihu treats and socializing with friends and family.bihu recipes

I am a total novice when it comes to Assamese cooking. Meet Sharmin Pasha. Sharmin created the very popular Assamese Cuisine & Recipes page on Facebook and has over forty-thousand fans worldwide. Needless to say, she is an authority in Assamese cooking. She also happens to be my sister-in-law (my hubby’s only sibling)!