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An organic tour of Dubai + the city's first Latin Food Festival


We don’t want to wish away Wednesday and Thursday, but this week we’re living for the weekend – and we’ll be getting up early too. But why? First, The Ivy is now open for breakfast from 7.30am until 11am every day, serving European breakfast staples such as pastries, pancakes, organic muesli, full English breakfasts and cooked eggs such as Benedict and Arlington. Also available is duck hash with a double yolk egg, plus a full vegetarian breakfast featuring tomato, hash brown, baked beans, mushroom, courgette and a choice of eggs.

After a leisurely breakfast, we then plan to spend Friday touring Dubai’s three new weekend farmers’ markets, which started at the end of January and cover the length of the city. First we’ll head to Deira to peruse the government-backed Organic Produce Market, located next to the Deira fish market and running on Fridays and Saturdays from 9am until 4pm. Once we’ve plundered the selection of locally grown, organic produce and had a chat to the farmers about how their oats, peas, beans and barley grow, we’ll head down Jumeirah Beach Road to see Ripe’s new Friday market, which takes place from 9am until 1pm (the Saturday market at The Courtyard in Al Quoz is also continuing). Then we’ll take a quick break to admire our tomatoes over a cappuccino at Le Gourmet Café, where the market is located.

Last but by no means least, it’s time to go across town to JLT, where organic grocery store Blue Planet Green People has just launched its own Friday market, running weekly from 10.30am until 2.30pm. With any luck, if we’re speedy we’ll get there in time for the 11.30am gardening workshop. After we’ve snapped up plenty of organic vegetables, fruit, eggs, bread and oil from the three markets, we’ll make a final pitstop for a strong Brazilian coffee and tasty salgados at neighbouring café Sweet Brasil, which is also involved in the JLT farmers’ market.

From one Latin cuisine to another, the first Taste of Peru festival will take place from Thursday February 28 to Saturday March 2 at the Amphitheatre at Souk Madinat Jumeirah. With Lima dubbed the Paris of Latin America for its cooking, and chefs such as Catalan chef Ferran Adrià citing Peruvian food as the next big thing, we’re delighted to see the event hit Dubai. The festival will feature live music from Peruvian musicians, cooking demonstrations from Peruvian celebrity chef Christian Bravo and the chance to sample specialities from the country such as tiradito, beef anticuchos and lomo saltado. Until next week, buen provecho!

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