It was a fine day we went for a day trip to Abu Dhabi when my niece’s boyfriend invited us for lunch since he is working there.
We thought that its another one of those Indian Foods that are widely being offered throughout United Arab Emirates. But, it was actually something different, something new- its Yemeni Cuisine.
From the word itself, the foods are from a country called Yemen and which actually made me curious about what Yemen foods would taste like.
As a foodie, I was excited to experience it. We dined in at Najd Palace Restaurant and Kitchen. It is located at the heart of Down Town Abu Dhabi. (exact location will be posted below as well as other information).
Najd Palace Restaurant and Kitchen offers a set up for guest who want to experience how a traditional Yemeni would eat. – No tables, no chairs – just cleaned floor and a sheet of paper placed on top of the floor for your food. Traditionally, foods are also taken by hand,of course, I tried doing so.
Tehrestaurant offers different Yemeni Cuisine but what we tried is there Mandi Chicken.
The one thing that’s unique about this dish is the rice and meet are cooked in the tandoor– which is a special kind of oven. The tandoor is usually a hole dug in the ground and covered inside by clay. To cook mandi, dry wood is placed in the tandoor and burned to generate a lot of heat turning into charcoal. The meat is then suspended inside the tandoor without touching the charcoal. After that, the whole tandoor is closed but an air vent is given to remove excess smoke. Raisins, pine nuts, or peanuts can be added to the rice as per one’s taste. The rice used was basmati. Basmati is a long grained rice commonly served in Middle Eastern countries.
You can just imagine how flavorful would this be considering an intensive way of cooking it.
Being able to experience it first hand is undoubtedly new. The rice was very aromatic with a hint of earthy smell. The flame wood smoke infusion with the rice and meat was divine. The chicken meat was huge than the picture shown. It was tender and juicy, paired with a cold cola plus an aromatic rice in a traditional setting made this experience one for keeps.
Of course a lunch would not be complete with a dessert. Unlike in the Philippines that most dessert are served cold, other countries served there dessert hot or warm. We had the Kunafa of Kanafeh as what the turkish would spell it. Still belonged to a mediterranean group of dessert that is said to be originated in the Palestinian City of Nablus.
The dessert is a Middle Eastern cheese pastry made up of shredded wheat noodle threads soaked in sweet, sugar-based syrup.It is cooked in small copper plates, and then served very hot in syrup with clotted cream or chocolate syrup in between two layers of shredded mixture.
This is there Menu:
If you happened to visit Abu Dhabi, I would recommend you to try it!
NAJD PALACE RESTAURANT AND KITCHEN
UAE – ABU DHABI – ALFALAH STREET
Office :024913336 – 024913338