Traditional Arab food in Dubai is a mouth-watering mix of cuisines from around the Middle East and beyond. The exotic, irresistible flavours of Lebanon, Iran and Morocco are all present in Dubai’s most popular dishes. Here are some of the tastiest foods that you can’t miss ordering if you’re in the emirate. There’s plenty for Vegetarians, and you can always order a few small dishes and enjoy ‘Mezze’ like the locals!
Commonly served during Ramadan, this dish is made from whipped wheat, chicken and salt that’s then baked to produce a unique texture, positioning the consistency of Al Harees somewhere between porridge and dumplings. A versatile dish that is light on the stomach after a traditional Ramadan fast.
Falafel is a popular snack food in the Middle East and one of the most eaten dishes in the Arab world. Mashed chickpeas and spices create a filling, nutritious ball of goodness that can be eaten as a snack or served in pitta bread with salad. A good vegetarian option in Dubai.
Lamb or Chicken Shawarma
Most people think of Shawarma when they think of Middle Eastern food. Any notions about greasy doner kebab served in your British takeaway will be banished when you sample one made in Dubai. The name refers to the method of cooking meat, and in Dubai they are topped with pickles, fries and garlic sauce and served in Arabic roti.
Hummus is basically a food group in the Middle East. Made from chickpeas, olive oil, tahini, garlic, lemon and salt; hummus is often served with pitta in Dubai and eaten as an appetizer. It also makes for a great dip with crudites and can be added to meat and vegetable dishes to give them a new twist.
Ghuzi is a main dish on most Dubai restaurants’ menus. It consists of whole roasted lamb on a bed of rice with vegetables and nuts.
Matchbous is also a lamb dish, though here the meat is boiled and cooked in a spiced tomato stew with added with rice.
Vegetarian dishes in Dubai may be hard to come by, but this is a favourite. The refreshing salad of tomatoes, onions and cucumber can also be served as a side dish and the zingy lemon and mint dressing will wake you up on the hottest of Dubai days.
A Health Warning from Health Insurance Dubai
Camel meat has been linked with the recent outbreak of MERS in the Middle East and South Korea. We advise people living in these areas to avoid markets, camels and the locally popular dish of stuffed camel, plus camel milk.